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European Digital Identity vision outlined by EC

European Digital Identity vision outlined by EC
 

The European Commission has unveiled plans for the development of trusted digital identities that can be used throughout the EU.

The documents, obtained by EURACTIV, outline a European Digital Identity vision, which was discussed at the European Digital Identity Roundtable held in Berlin last Friday.

According to the new data, digital identification has become ‘fundamental’ to the everyday operation of online services, but a universally recognized and secure solution is lacking.

“There is no user choice for trusted and secure identification that protects personal data and can be widely used,” the document reads.

At the event, representatives of the German EU Council Presidency met with other European institutions and Member States, confirming the documents’ plans, in an effort to establish new EU guidelines for digital identity.

“It is the responsibility of the European industry to help strengthen the European digital single market and to invest in our common European future,” said Bundesdruckerei CEO Stefan Hofschen, opening the event.

So far, 14 EU countries have deployed eID schemes, allowing citizens to use electronic documents within their own countries.

The new plans unveiled by the European Commission would now try to extend access to public services to other EU countries, without the need for additional IDs.

“Like in the analog world, all citizens must be able to identify themselves in the digital space – quickly, easily and securely,” said Dr. Markus Richter, a German State secretary.

“We, therefore, advocate EU-interoperable, trusted, and privacy-sensitive solutions for user-friendly digital identification.”

Richter added the German government supports the cooperative implementation and further development of the eIDAS regulation.

“Our goal is to create a future-proof European legal framework for digital identities together with our European partners.”

The document ends with a cautious note, however, as it reports state members are not yet ready to embrace this vision due to low levels of connectivity as well as having public sectors that have not yet been fully digitalized.

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