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Consumers Alerted to Internet Scams Offering ‘International Driver Licenses’

CONTACT: Robert Sanchez
Public Information Administrator

May 1, 2002

TALLAHASSEE--Internet scam artists are bilking consumers by peddling documents purporting to be an "international driver license," state officials warned on Wednesday. The ads infer that the United Nations mandates acceptance of these "licenses."

"There is such a thing as a legitimate international driver license, but it’s not for sale on the Internet," Florida Attorney General Bob Butterworth warned.

"The phony documents sold on the Web are, at the least, useless," Mr. Butterworth continued. "They’re not accepted as proof of age or identity. They’re not accepted as proof that the bearer is entitled to drive.

"At the worst," Mr. Butterworth added, "such documents can get the bearers into trouble with the law, especially if they try to use them to drive without a valid license, to engage in financial fraud, or to circumvent laws such as those against underage drinking."

A legitimate international driver license merely reflects the information contained on a valid driver license issued by a recognized licensing authority. Americans who plan to travel abroad and who have a valid state-issued license may obtain a legitimate international driver license through the AAA. However, they may not use it within the United States. Neither is it accepted abroad as proof of the traveler’s identity.

Likewise, a duly licensed foreign motorist visiting the United States may obtain a legitimate international driver license in his home country and, while driving in the United States, may use it as proof of the driving privilege but not as proof of identity.

Non-U.S. citizens who take up residence, accept employment, purchase a vehicle, or otherwise extend their Florida stay should obtain a Florida driver license.

In Florida, driver licenses are issued by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. A list of office locations and licensing requirements is available on the agency’s Website at www.flhsmv.gov.

2002 Press Releases       DHSMV Press Releases

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