TxDMV announces paper license plate design overhaul in effort to prevent fraud

KTRK logo
Thursday, November 17, 2022
Fake paper plates causing real problems on the road
EMBED <>More Videos

You see the paper tags every time you drive in Houston. Turns out, many of them are fake and police say it's making it difficult to solve crimes.

Amid growing concerns about the rising use of counterfeit temporary license plates by criminals, the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles announced that temporary tags are getting a major design overhaul.

TxDMV said it's the next step in ongoing efforts that have made a significant difference in curtailing and preventing the fraudulent production of, access to, and the use of temporary tags.

The video above is from a previous report.

In 2021, officials estimated at least 1.8 million fraudulent paper plates were on the roads in Texas.

READ MORE: Fake paper plates causing real problems on the road and costing Texas millions

The new tags are more complex than existing tags, making them more secure, TxDMV said. They include additional data and security features to make it easier for law enforcement to spot a fake.

"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 new tags on Dec. 9, 2022.

SEE ALSO: Fake paper car tags cost Harris County more than $80M in past 6 years, new report finds

TxDMV released a photo of what the new tags will look like, but noted that certain security elements were modified so they cannot be digitally replicated.

Here are some of the new features:

  • 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 byinternal TxDMV computer systems

Previously, TxDMV took other measures to reduce fraud by limiting the number of tags Texas dealers can create and denying access to the temporary tag system when fraudulent activity is identified.

RELATED: Sugar Land man accused of using fake car dealership to sell 700,000 fake paper car plates