HEIDELBERG, Germany — The rules have changed for those who lose their military ID card.

Both soldiers and civilians now must first report their lost card to the local military police before they can be issued a new one.

The new rule will allow officials to better track when and where cards are being lost or stolen, said Lt. Col. Brian McNerney, an Army spokesman.

Missing ID cards are force-protection issues, he said, so deputy U.S. Army Europe commander Lt. Gen. Michael L. Dodson passed down the new order effective Dec. 1.

The new rule, he explained, however, is just direction to follow older rules.

USAREUR policy, he said, already required people to report lost ID cards to the MPs.

“Some ID card-issuing facilities have been requiring proof of Military Police notification, in the form of a locally produced Provost Marshal Lost ID Form, while many have not been doing so,” McNerney said.

The change also comes as Army officials have begun testing a base access system that officials hope will soon see gate guards across Europe swiping ID cards through hand-held computers designed to verify access and authenticity.

The rule change also means the names of those who’ve lost their cards will now show up on the local daily crime “blotter” for “information purposes only,” said McNerney.

While information gathered for the blotter will also be entered into a military police data base that will allow officials to track the exact numbers and cases of lost ID cards more thoroughly, said McNerney, soldiers should know “their commanders will be made aware of the fact they lost their ID cards.”

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