A passport is a government issued travel document that is primarily used for international travel but can also be used to confirm the identity and nationality of its holder. Passports may contain information such as the holder’s name, signature, place of birth, photograph, and authority that issued the document as well as other identifying information.
Each passport will contain several security features such as a microchip, UV dull paper, watermark, optically variable ink, anti-scan patterning, special fonts and font sizing, encoded, invisible fluorescent fibres, chemical sensitizers, tactile features and a particular method of sewing to bind the pages together.
Biometric passports contain the same information and security measures as a traditional passport but also contained a chip, which is machine readable and difficult to counterfeit. These are also known as e-passports.
Applications for passports in most countries can be completed online, however applications can be made in person at the issuing authorities offices. A fee is usually payable on application. A passport renewal can be done in much the same way as an initial passport application.
It is commonplace for confirmation of identity to be done via a notarised copy of a passport. A Notary Public is trained to verify passports and will use various techniques to check its authenticity. Once the passport has been established as genuine, a copy can be made of either the photographic page, or the whole passport, and this can be notarised as a true copy of the original by a Notary. Specific pages, such as Visas, can also be verified and copied before being notarised. A Notary can also use specific wording on the copy of the passport to verify both the validity of the document and that the photograph featured on the document is a true likeness of the passport holder. This will however require the passport holder to appear before the Notary.
Notarised copies of passports may be used as standalone documents or may be used conjunction with other documents such as powers of attorney, and overseas bank account applications.