Organisers of the 2018 Fifa World Cup believe that Fan ID technology to be used in Russia will become common at major events in the coming years.
Russia 2018 officials hailed the software as the first centre for issuing IDs was opened in Moscow on Thursday.
Fan ID cards will be required for football fans travelling to the international football tournament in a bid to enhance security measures.
The system involves fans filling in a questionnaire with passport data and attaching a photo on the website fan-id.ru.
Once fans have filled in the information online, they receive the tickets by post or at a ticket office in one of the host cities. The Fan ID system also gives fans the ability to travel to the venues for free, using special shuttle trains between host cities.
Fifa has no control over Fan ID cards, which are issued by the Russian government, but world football’s governing body is closely monitoring the system.
“This is one of the most important stages ahead of the World Cup and can be also viewed as the launch of the tournament,” said Russian deputy prime minister Vitaly Mutko, who is head of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) Russia 2018, during the centre’s opening ceremony, according to TASS news agency.
“The Final Draw is over, everything is clear and we are on the brink of the most important moment, which is the distribution of tickets and acquisition of Fan-IDs.”
Russian Communications Minister Nikolai Nikiforov said: “Our colleagues initially expressed doubts (regarding the Fan ID initiative), but the 2017 Fifa Confederations Cup proved that the doubts were groundless as over 500,000 people obtained Fan ID’s, including abroad Russia.
“About 90 per cent of ticket holders obtained Fan IDs in advance, while 10 per cent received them at special tents, located near stadiums.
“The innovative Fan ID technology will become a standard procedure for its use in other countries.”
More than a million ticket requests were made when sales resumed for the 2018 Fifa World Cup earlier this week.
World football’s governing body described “another wave of worldwide interest” as around 1.3 million requests were made in the first 24 hours of the second sales phase.