By Maria-Jose Subiria
Gov. Sonny Perdue recently announced the addition of eight Internet services through the Georgia Department of Driver Services, geared to aid motorists and identification-card holders.
The services, available at the department's web site -- www.dds.ga.gov -- include the ability to create a secure personal customer account; conduct multiple transactions at one time using an online shopping cart; change an address while conducting other transactions; pay most Failure to Appear suspensions; check moving violation points; order a certified motor vehicle report; order an identification card, and choose to receive e-mail notifications and information from the department, according to Susan Sports, a spokeswoman for the department.
"DDS [Department of Driver Services] has worked towards creating more efficient services for Georgia citizens," added Perdue, in a prepared statement. "By reducing wait times and providing excellent online services, DDS has become the example for quality customer service."
Spokeswoman Susan Sports said initiating licensing services via the Internet saves customers valuable time and traveling expenses, by saving them a trip to a local Driver's License Customer Service Center.
Through the mail, the department will remind customers to renew their driver's licenses or upgrade their licenses online, she said. Sports said that, in the past, customers had to wait for an "Automated Renewal Information" packet in the mail. Now, they will receive a post-card reminder, and can take action with just a click of a mouse.
"Our goal is to make each customer's experience easier and more convenient, while preserving the privacy of personal information," said Gregory Dozier, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Driver Services. "Now, customers can obtain more licensing services 24 hours/seven days a week from the comfort of their home or office." Sports said the web site for customers is as secure and safe as asking for the same services in person. Some security features include: the ability to create a personalized account, which protects a customer's identity and personal data, and a confirmation after each transaction, she said.
She said there will be additional services available in the future, including the ability to reinstate a driver's license and pay online; make a road test reservation; and report the completion of certificates for risk-reduction schools.
Sports said that, as of Dec. 6, there have been 4,617 customers who have used the web site, and license renewals and address changes have been the most popular actions.