Frequently Asked Questions
O'Hare International Airport ID Badging Office

In light of increased security and efficiency concerns, all ID Badging/Access Control policies and procedures are under review, and subject to revision. Please continue to visit this site for updated policy and procedure information.


What are Photo ID Badges?

The airport is required by federal regulation to issue an identification badge to airport employees. O’Hare International and Midway Airports also use this media to control access through various security doors at the airports. The ID Badge consists of: a photo of the employee, the employees pertinent information (name, company and badge number), an expiration date and a magnetic strip on the back of the card which is used in conjunction with the airports' access control system.

Who do I contact for further information?

How does the photo ID Badge work?

Your ID Badge contains a magnetically encoded strip. The coding on the strip and the Personal Identification Number (PIN), selected by you or your employer, will allow access through the controlled doors and gates to which you have been granted access. Your PIN number must remain confidential. You must memorize your PIN for use in combination with you ID Badge to enter access controlled doors and gates at the Airport.

How can access be changed?

If the access that you have is not adequate and you need additional access privileges, your employer must complete an ID Badge Access Code Change Form and submit it to the ID Badging Office. Most access changes do not require you to go to the ID Badging Office to get a new badge, however, you must go to the ID Badging Office if you access change requires a change in a badge type. For example: If you go from a red badge to a green badge , you will need to come to the office to make this change.

What happens if you forget your ID Badge?

If you report to work without your ID Badge, you will be unable to access the SIDA. No temporary badges will be issued. If you lose your ID Badge, you must follow the procedure for reporting a lost or stolen ID Badge described in that section.

When and where should you wear your ID Badge?

You must wear you ID Badge at all times while on in the Security Identification Display Area (SIDA). The ID Badge must be easily visible and displayed below the neck and above the waist on you outermost garment. Department of Aviation Security Officers and persons with Green or Blue ID Badges have the right to inspect your ID Badge any time you are in the SIDA. City of Chicago Municipal Code allows fines to be levied upon any employee who is in the SIDA without his/her badge displayed.

What do you do with you ID Badge if your airport employment ends?

If your employment at the Airport ends for any reason you must promptly return your ID Badge either to your employer or to the ID Badging Office. Your access will be eliminated from the system upon notification to the ID Badging Office of your termination of employment.

Important note: If you do not turn in your ID Badging at the end of your employment and you try to get another badge in the future, because employment has resumed or a new employer requires you to get a badge, you will be fined $50.00 for a lost badge and $100.00 for a second or subsequent loss of an identification badge within a 24 month period of the initial loss.

What about access into the SIDA?

Persons entering the SIDA must have been issued a Green or Blue ID Badge. Persons who do not have a Green or Blue ID Badge are not allowed to enter the SIDA unless they are being escorted by a person who has SIDA access. back to top

What is a SIDA escort?

A SIDA escort is an individual displaying a Green or Blue ID Badge with SIDA access privileges. The escort is responsible for controlling the direction, actions and duration on the SIDA of all person being escorted. back to top

When is an escort required?

If it becomes necessary for you to enter a SIDA area for which you are not authorized, you must be escorted by a SIDA-authorized ID Badge holder. All visitors must also be escorted by a Green or Blue ID Badge holder. back to top

What is Piggybacking?

Piggybacking is when one individual follows another through an access controlled door without swiping their ID badge or entering their PIN. Both piggybacking and allowing someone to piggyback behind you are prohibited and can result in citations and fines from the Department of Aviation, as well as the Federal Aviation Administration. back to top

What should you do if you identify an unauthorized person in the SIDA?

As an ID Badge holder, you have the responsibility to challenge and question any person on the SIDA who is not displaying or has an incorrect or invalid ID Badge.

If you encounter a person with an ID Badge that does not bear that person’s photo you must report the person to Department of Aviation Security or Chicago Police by calling (773) 894-9111 (ORD).

If after requesting to examine the ID Badge of such a person that person attempts to leave without allowing you to examine their ID Badge, you must immediately notify Department of Aviation Security or Chicago Police by calling (773) 894-9111 (ORD). Be prepared to provide a description of the person or persons involved.

You should not take any actions that are potentially dangerous. The challenging procedure does not require you to apprehend unauthorized persons or act in any manner that is unlawful. Apprehension of unauthorized persons should only be handled by Department of Aviation Security or Chicago Police. back to top

What about Vehicles in the SIDA?

Vehicles entering the SIDA must be operated by a SIDA-authorized Driver. The only exception to this rule is for those airline employees who access Post 1 at O'Hare, for the purpose of parking in the hangar-area parking lots. ID Badges for persons authorized to drive on the SIDA have a band of color (yellow, orange or yellow-orange combination) across the top for easy identification. In addition, the vehicle itself must also be authorized to enter the SIDA and should contain an airport issued vehicle permit, visible through the windshield. Applications for SIDA Vehicle Permits can be obtained at the ID Badging Office or downloaded at

back to top