Enhanced security and data enhancements would further reduce fraudulent tag use
November 23, 2022 - Texas temporary tags are getting a major design overhaul. The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV) is introducing a new look for tags that are issued by licensed Texas motor vehicle dealers. This is the next step in ongoing efforts that have made a significant difference in curtailing and preventing the fraudulent production of, access to, and use of temporary tags.
Continued collaboration with law enforcement identified the opportunity to further reduce fraud related to counterfeit tags. Counterfeit tags are produced by criminals using various tools outside TxDMV systems. The department has spent the last several months redesigning the look and embedded security features of official temporary tags.
“With the support of our law enforcement partners, The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles is setting a new standard for temporary tag security and design,” said TxDMV Executive Director Daniel Avitia.
Licensed dealers will begin issuing the redesigned temporary tags on December 9, 2022. The new tags are more complex and secure than existing tags and include additional data and security features to facilitate law enforcement identification of counterfeit tags and increase the safety of traffic stops. (Note: Certain security elements of the temporary tag depicted below have been modified so they cannot be digitally replicated.)
Features of the New Tag Design
Note: For security purposes, not all features are included or fully described in this list.
- Texas flag watermark.
- Enhanced depiction of tag expiration date, vehicle year and make, and name of issuing dealer.
- Identification of the specific type of tag issued.
- Font selection and size that maximize readability of primary components.
- Active and passive security features identifiable by law enforcement.
- Numerous pieces of embedded data and text, linked to law enforcement databases, that can be created only by internal TxDMV computer systems.
Prior Changes to Temporary Tags
Since the end of the 87th Legislative Session, TxDMV has taken action to prevent the improper use of temporary tags. Implementation of House Bill 3927 allowed the department to place limits on the number of tags licensed Texas dealers can create. The bill also provided TxDMV authority to immediately deny access to the temporary tag system when fraudulent activity is identified.
The department complimented these statutory changes with numerous operational enhancements, including:
- Simplified coordination with law enforcement.
- Expanded access to data by law enforcement.
- Additional data validation prior to issuance of temporary tags and timed permits.
- Additional automatic checks on vehicle identification numbers.
- Enhanced licensing review standards.
- Fingerprint-based criminal background checks on dealer license applicants.
These actions have been highly effective in reducing fraudulent temporary tag activity. More information on these activities can be found on the department’s website at www.TxDMV.gov/temporarytags.