09/13/2012 06:10 EDT | Updated 09/10/2013 12:14 EDT

ePassport Set To Replace Old Canadian Passports, Adds Digital Chip


Get ready Canada, your passport is about go high tech.

The new passport, dubbed the ePassport by the Government of Canada, is set to make its debut in the spring of 2013. The latest version of the passport will feature a chip and enhanced security features designed to stop identity theft and make the document more tamper-proof, reports the Toronto Sun.

Earlier this week, the RCMP reported that the number of stolen legal documents, such as social insurance numbers and doctored birth certificates were on the rise, according to the Canadian Press.

In addition to the upgrade, the passport will come in two versions: one for adults, which needs to be renewed every 10 years, and another for children, set to last five years. Adults can expect to pay $135 for a 10-year ePassport. They can also opt for a five-year version for $95, while the children's passport is set at $57.

The current version of the passport costs approximately $87 for adults and $37 for children, but needs to be replaced six months prior to its expiry date.

The ePassport is said to store the same basic information, such as the holder's name, sex, photo, passport number, place and date of birth as well as the passport's expiry date within the chip, according to Contactless News.

But that's not all. As reported by the Montreal Gazette, the ePassport can also store additional information, such as past car rentals, hotel reservations or frequent flyer programs to which the user subscribes.

Canada will be joining some 95 countries around the world that issue ePassports. There are an estimated 400 million ePassports in circulation worldwide, according to the Government of Canada.

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