Say cheese! Unless you happen to live in Arkansas, Indiana, Nevada or Virginia, that is. In a case that once again reminds us that the truth is often stranger than fiction, these four states have reportedly adopted new legislation that could lead to the end of smiling faces on driver's license photos.
Virginia is the only state that's banned smiles completely, while the other three states still allow "slight smiles." Why so serious? Apparently, a "neutral face expression" makes it easier for the DMV's whiz-bang facial recognition computer software to make positive matches to photos already in its database.
There's reason to believe the new edict will cause a significant reduction in identity fraud cases: photo matching software has reportedly stopped some 6,000 such cases in Illinois alone since it was first adopted in 1999. Don't be surprised to see more states adopt the wipe-that-smile-off-your-face policy in the near future, as 27 other states use similar software and three more are considering it now.
[Source: USA Today via Kicking Tires | Image: eBaum's World]