Identity tape, 2269

Carter Winston's identity tape

Identity tape, 2267

An identity tape being read by a computer during a court martial.

An identity tape was a record tape with identification data used by Federation citizens during the 23rd century. Identity tapes were typically used by citizens engaged in deep-space travel that might take them out of regular contact with the Federation. The tapes provided a form of verification and guarded against identity fraud over long periods of absence from society, during which time their identity might be assumed by another individual. They included data such as fingerprints and voiceprint, as well as information on licenses and registration. Computers were used to verify these tapes by matching them to records of that individual maintained in the computer of a starship or starbase. Identity tapes were admissable in court to verify identities. (TOS: "Court Martial";TAS: "The Survivor")

Starfleet regulations demanded immediate identification and a medical check for persons arriving on a starship. The Vendorian posing as Carter Winston supplied the real Carter Winston's identity tapes to Spock upon request; the first officer told the impostor that he would notify Anne Nored of his presence upon the verification of "Winston"'s identity. Doctor Leonard McCoy felt this to be a "cold-blooded, inhospitable request". (TAS: "The Survivor")

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