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MRTD MRZ FAQ

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MACHINE READABLE TRAVEL DOCUMENTS

machine-readable passport (MRP) is a machine-readable travel document (MRTD) with the data on the identity page encoded in optical character recognition format. Many countries began to issue machine-readable travel documents in the 1980s.

Most travel passports worldwide are MRPs. They are standardized by the ICAO Document 9303 (endorsed by the International Organization for Standardization and the International Electrotechnical Commission as ISO/IEC 7501-1) and have a special machine-readable zone (MRZ), which is usually at the bottom of the identity page at the beginning of a passport. The ICAO Document 9303 describes three types of documents. Usually, passport booklets are issued in "Type 3" format, while identity cards and passport cards typically use the "Type 1" format. The machine-readable zone of a Type 3 travel document spans two lines, and each line is 44 characters long. The following information must be provided in the zone: name, passport number, nationality, date of birth, sex, and passport expiration date. There is room for optional, often country-dependent, supplementary information. The machine-readable zone of a Type 1 travel document spans three lines, and each line is 30 characters long.

Machine-readable passports enable faster processing of arriving passengers by immigration officials, and greater accuracy than manually read passports, as well as faster data entry and data matching against immigration databases and watchlists.

Check digit consists of a single digit computed from the other digits in a series. Check digits in the MRZ are calculated on specified numerical data elements in the MRZ. The check digits permit readers to verify that data in the MRZ is correctly interpreted.

Composite (overall) check digits. The calculation method for composite check digits is the same for all MRTDs. However, the location and number of the digits to be included in the calculation are different between the different types of documents.

 

 

TD 1 -  TYPE 1 DOCUMENT

Screen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_11.12.20.png

Screen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_11.27.45.png

 

TD2 - TYPE 2 DOCUMENT

Screen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_11.16.24.pngScreen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_11.16.34.png

TD3 - TYPE 3 DOCUMENT

 

Screen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_11.26.26.pngScreen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_11.26.33.png

 

MACHINE READABLE VISA

Screen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_11.20.27.pngScreen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_11.20.35.png

 

CHECK DIGITS

A check digit consists of a single digit computed from the other digits in a series. Check digits in the MRZ are calculated on specified numerical data elements in the MRZ. The check digits permit readers to verify that data in the MRZ is correctly interpreted. A special check digit calculation has been adopted for use in MRTDs

The check digits shall be calculated on modulus 10 with a continuously repetitive weighting of 731 731 ..., as follows.

Step 1. Going from left to right, multiply each digit of the pertinent numerical data element by the weighting figure appearing in the corresponding sequential position.

Step 2. Add the products of each multiplication.

Step 3. Divide the sum by 10 (the modulus).

Step 4. The remainder shall be the check digit.

For data elements in which the number does not occupy all available character positions, the symbol < shall be used to complete vacant positions and shall be given the value of zero for the purpose of calculating the check digit. When the check digit calculation is applied to data elements containing alphabetic characters, the characters A to Z shall have the values 10 to 35 consecutively, as follows:

 

Screen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_09.44.51.png



Data elements included in the check digit calculation and check digit location for each document type are contained in the form factor specific Parts 4 to 7 of Doc 9303. Examples of check digit calculation:

Using 27 July 1952 as an example, with the date in numeric form, the calculation will be:

 

Date: 5 2 0 7 2 7
Weighting: 7 9 1 7 3 1
Products: 35 6 0 49 6 7

Step 1 (multiplication)

Step 2 (sum of products) 35 + 6 + 0 + 49 + 6 + 7 = 103

Step 3 (division by modulus) 103/10 = 10,3 remainder 3

Step 4 Check digit is the remainder, 3.

The date and its check digit shall consequently be written as:

5207273

COMPOSITE (OVERALL) CHECK DIGITS

Using the upper and middle lines of MRZ data of a TD1 that follow as an example for coding the composite check digit, the calculation will be:

Upper machine readable line (character positions 1–30): I<YTOD231458907<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< Middle machine readable line (character positions 1–29): 3407127M9507122YTO<<<<<<<<<<<

I<YTOD231458907<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Element D 2 3 1 4 5 8 9 0 7
Num.values 13 2 3 1 4 5 8 9 0 7
Weighting 7 3 1 7 3 1 7 3 1 7
Multiplication 91 6 3 7 12 5 56 27 0 49

 

 

Element < < < < < < < < < <
Num.values 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Weighting 3 1 7 3 1 7 3 1 7 3
Multiplication 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

 

 

Element < < < < <
Num.values 0 0 0 0 0
Weighting 1 7 3 1 7
Multiplication 0 0 0 0 0

 

 

3407127M9507122YTO<<<<<<<<<<<

Element 3 4 0 7 1 2 7 9 5 0
Num.values 3 4 0 7 1 2 7 9 5 0
Weighting 3 1 7 3 1 7 3 1 7 3
Multiplication 9 4 0 21 1 14 21 9 35 0

 

Element 7 1 2 2 < < < < < <
Num.values 7 1 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0
Weighting 1 7 3 1 7 3 1 7 3 1
Multiplication 7 7 6 2 0 0 0 0 0 0

 

 

Element < < < < <
Num.values 0 0 0 0 0
Weighting 7 3 1 7 3
Multiplication 0 0 0 0 0

 

 

Multiplication sum calculation

91 + 6 + 3 + 7 + 12 + 5 + 56 + 27 + 0 + 49 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0

+ 9 + 4 + 0 + 21 + 1 + 14 + 21 + 9 + 35 + 0 + 7 + 7 + 6 + 2 + 0 +  0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0

(sum of Multiplication products) = 392

 (division by modulus) 392/10 = 39,2 remainder 2

Check digit is the remainder, 2.

The middle line of MRZ data together with its composite check digit may consequently be written as follows: 3407127M9507122YTO<<<<<<<<<<<2.

 

The location and number of the digits to be included in the calculation are different between the different types of documents. For completeness, examples of each are included here.

TD1:
Upper machine readable line (character positions 1–30):
I<YTOD231458907<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
Middle machine readable line (character positions 1–29):
3407127M9507122YTO<<<<<<<<<<<

TD2:
Lower machine readable line (character positions 1–35):
HA672242<6YTO5802254M9601086<<<<<<<

TD3:
Character positions 1-43: Example with no alpha-numeric characters in “optional data” field. HA672242<6YTO5802254M9601086<<<<<<<0

 

 

 

Screen_Shot_2018-07-26_at_10.58.10.png

 

CODES FOR NATIONALITY, PLACE OF BIRTH, LOCATION OF ISSUING STATE/AUTHORITY AND OTHER PURPOSES

Part A — Letter Codes The following are the two- and three-letter codes for entities specified and regularly updated in [ISO 3166-1], with extensions for certain States and organizations being identified by an asterisk. The current version of the codes may be obtained from the [ISO 3166] maintenance agency - [ISO 3166/MA], ISO’s focal point for country codes.

Couple samples of country code:

Entity

(short name)

2-letter code

3-letter code  

Entity

(short name)

2-letter code 3-letter code
Croatia HR HRV   Germany DE D
United States US USA   Canada CA CAN
United Kingdom UK     Russian Federation RU RUS
— British Citizen   GBR   Brazil BR BRA
— British Overseas Territories Citizen   GBD    Malaysia   MY MYS

 


ISO ONLINE BROWSING PLATFORM:

https://www.iso.org/obp/ui/#search

 

Sources:

Wikipedia - Machine-readable passport

Machine Readable Travel Documents Part 1: Introduction

Machine Readable Travel Documents Part 2: Specifications for the Security of the Design, Manufacture, and Issuance of MRTDs

Machine Readable Travel Documents Part 3: Specifications Common to all MRTDs

Machine Readable Travel Documents Part 4: Specifications for Machine Readable Passports (MRPs) and other TD3 Size MRTDs

Machine Readable Travel Documents Part 5: Specifications for TD1 Size Machine Readable Official Travel Documents (MROTDs)

Machine Readable Travel Documents Part 6: Specifications for TD2 Size Machine Readable Official Travel Documents (MROTDs)

Machine Readable Travel Documents Part 7: Machine Readable Visas

International Organization for Standardization

 

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    Ferdinand Jalsovszky

    For example for the TD1 how to calculate Overall check digit for upper and middle lines? Which numbers and which spaces to count? New line multiplicators starts with 7 or continues from first line?