Sens. Bill Cassidy, R-La., and Ron Wyden, D-Ore., introduced a bill on Saturday that would allow the U.S. Postal Service to provide identity verification services to the private sector.
The Post Office Services for Trustworthy Identity Act, or POST ID Act, wouldn’t require USPS to offer identity proofing services, but it would give it the authority to charge fees to cover the cost if it does offer the services.
The senators say the proposal is meant to address identity fraud fueled by artificial intelligence and deepfakes by offering in-person identity proofing where individuals are vetted against physical credentials, something the senators say most businesses couldn’t do themselves without retail networks reaching across the country.
“Criminals using hacked personal information made it hard enough to verify a person’s identity — now AI deepfakes have added a whole new challenge for the most common verification methods. The best way to confirm who someone is, is in-person verification,” Wyden said in a statement.
The bill would also authorize USPS to issue authenticators like physical security keys to people who are verified and enroll people into digital accounts or systems with their consent.