Passport and ID card systems

Bundesdruckerei has a tradition of producing Germany's ID cards and passports. The company also supplies comprehensive ID systems and operates the background systems, from document application right through to document production. Many foreign nations also rely on our expertise when it comes to solutions and products for governments.

Protecting identities in both the analogue and digital world

For Germany, we produce electronic ID cards, passports, residence permits, office ID cards as well as visas and driving licences. In this way, we are helping to protect people's identity in both the analogue and digital world.

Our document production services include technologies and products for:

  • data enrolment at registration authorities,
  • processing, managing and transmitting the application data and the produced documents,
  • secure documents,
  • personalisation of ID documents
  • and document issuance.


Whether an ID card, ePassport or driving licence, in order to enable secure identities, staff at citizens' registration offices or passport authorities must first collect the applicant's biographical and biometric data, for instance, the name, date of birth, signature or fingerprint, according to standardised quality parameters and depending on the type of document.

ID enrolment platform
This is where our ID enrolment platform comes into play. This platform provides reliable and efficient support for all work steps along the entire process chain, from recording the data, including automated plausibility checks and quality assessment, right down to encrypted and signed transmission to our personalisation centre. During data collection, guidelines and recommendations, for instance, by the International Civil Aviation Organization, ICAO, or specific national needs of different countries can be taken into consideration.

The ID enrolment platform is a modular system comprising peripheral devices (e.g. a PC, special camera, fingerprint scanner, signature pad or reader) and software (for instance, for collecting data). This enables the correct and secure collection, processing, storing and forwarding of biographical and biometric data.

Self-service terminal
We have also developed a self-service terminal that applicants can use at the public agency to enter their personal data. Companies can also use this device to accredit visitors faster.

Enrolment kit
Public agencies wishing to offer immobile citizens their services on-site can use our enrolment kit that contains all the hardware and software components needed to apply for an ID document.

Processing, managing and transmitting

The data captured is digitally encrypted, signed and sent to us so that we can process this data in order to produce and personalise the ID documents. In this case, central or decentralised database solutions can be used depending on both legislation in the country in question and customer specifications.

A public key infrastructure (PKI) ensures data security. Only persons and devices integrated into the system can access and process the data. In this way, we can ensure that only genuine, authentic data is used in the next steps of the process.

Secure documents

We produce our documents in Berlin on high-tech systems that use state-of-the-art technology. These documents meet the highest standards in terms of protection against forgery. At the same time, the documents are easy to use. Electronic ID cards (eID cards) made of polycarbonate (PC) fully meet these requirements: This material makes the cards robust, a particularly important aspect in light of how long many official ID documents remain valid. Their security features can be ideally adapted to the respective application field and forgeries are near to impossible thanks to diverse protection mechanisms. With the right kind of verification devices, the cards can be easily checked and databases can also be accessed if permitted by law. This makes it easier to detect identity misuse than with conventional ID documents. We have a diverse range of documents on offer.

Electronic ID cards (eID cards)
We are experts in the development and production of innovative eID cards. These cards can be equipped with a host of different functions, depending on where you want to use them. All of the materials used meet with the highest quality standards. Our production facilities have been audited and have received security accreditation according to the strictest international guidelines.

German electronic ID card
One example of this is the German ID card in credit-card format. While basically serving as photo ID, for instance, in dealings with the police or public authorities, this card can be equipped with the online ID function and the qualified electronic signature (QES) as optional functions to make transactions on the net more convenient and secure. Thanks to the online ID function, holders of an electronic ID card can authenticate themselves on the net and at vending machines in a secure and reliable manner, so that they can, for instance, open an account online. Only service providers, such as public authorities or companies in possession of a corresponding authorisation certificate can read the data stored on the ID card. In this way, both partners can rest assured that their virtual partner is in fact who they claim to be.

Electronic passport (ePassport)
We also produce the German electronic passport (ePassport). A host of classical, optical and machine-readable security features ensure outstanding protection against forgery. Through Veridos GmbH, a joint venture by Bundesdruckerei und Giesecke & Devrient, we are also serving the international market and producing passports for foreign governments.

Electronic office ID card
We additionally produce electronic office ID cards that allow both private companies and public authorities to shape their processes and workflows in a much smoother, more efficient and secure manner. Time clocks, electronic signatures, access authorisation and payment functions are just some of the applications possible. A tiered security system is the foundation for protecting and managing the data stored.

Electronic residence permit
We produce electronic residence permits for Germany. The biometric data on this eID card allows official authorities to reliably verify the identity of the document holder. Using the online ID function and a six-digit PIN, holders can prove their identity even for electronic applications on the Internet or at vending machines. In addition to this, the electronic residence permit has been prepared for the qualified electronic signature (QES).

EU driving licence card
Since 1999, we have been producing Germany's EU driving licence card that is valid throughout Europe. A practical direct-delivery service means that German citizens do not need to go to the public agency to pick up the finished document. For a small fee, the driving licence can be delivered directly to the holder's private address. All the holder has to do is to select this option when applying for the card.

Through Veridos GmbH, a joint venture by Bundesdruckerei and Giesecke & Devrient, we are also serving the international market and producing driving licences for countries like Lithuania and Slovakia.

Solutions & Products

The Electronic Residence Permit - Security Features

Security features of the electronic residence permit

File size: 944.22 KB

Format: PDF


The applicant's personal data is what makes an ID document unique. We operate one of the world's largest specialist centres where we perform this so-called personalisation of documents, both optically and electronically. We also provide tailor-made personalisation solutions for customers themselves, be it individual components or an entire personalisation system.

We supply these customers with state-of-the-art production technology and, if necessary, the blank documents. The personalisation solutions can be easily adapted to new types of documents. All of the software packages supplied by Bundesdruckerei for this purpose meet with international standards. Our personalisation machines are suitable for both small and large countries, for registration offices and embassies, and even for companies operating in the private sector.

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