While it still presents a challenge to many businesses and government institutions, the greater idea behind eIDAS is to strive towards a true digital single market in Europe. It’s meant to make life easier and more secure when it comes to electronic identification, authentication and digital “transactions” in the broadest sense!
Leading the way to a stronger economic market and cross-border transactions
The very diverging implementations of the preceding eSignatures Directive and related technical standards left the European member states with fragmented and inconsistent electronic signature law. Interoperability and mutual recognition were wishful thinking rather than actual benefits yet due to significant differences in legal status and validity across European countries.
All this is meant to change with the new eIDAS regulation, creating a true digital single market with a consistent application of the legal framework in all member states.
The eIDAS regulation has two parts to it:
- the mutual recognition of electronic identification means by all European countries, mandatory as from end of September 2018 and
- providing a legal European framework for providers of trust services
The different trust services targeted by eIDAS: An overview
The creation, verification, and validation of and certificates related to:
- electronic signatures,
- electronic seals,
- electronic timestamps,
- electronic registered delivery services and
- certificates for website authentication.
+ the preservation of electronic signatures, seals or certificates related to these services.
Figure: eIDAS trust services supported by Utimaco HSM
More information on the eIDAS regulation, take a look here at our website. As a trust service provider, you might want to consult our product offering to reach eIDAS-compliance and the related webinars.
Very practically speaking this relates to …
- signing electronic documents such as a loan agreement, healthcare document or tax declaration with a legally valid digital signature – no more printing, signing by all required parties & scanning the document or sending it by post, and most importantly, no more waiting in between all these steps!
- authentic and legally valid timestamps for electronic transactions, documents & signatures – creating certainty as to when a transaction took place or when a document was created and signed.
- citizens using their home country eID card to authenticate to another European countries’ public services, whether it’s for an exchange semester during their studies or moving to another country including visits to the registration office, opening a bank account, starting a business and authenticating to a tax portal to fill in the tax declaration. The Dutch eIDAS 2018 Municipalities Project is one of the very early adopters of mutual, cross-border recognition of European eID cards to connect to public services. The high percentage of foreign nationals in many Dutch municipalities makes this a valuable project to create a seamless, efficient and comfortable user experience.
- eIDAS notified eID cards as a possible solution for strong customer authentication in the payment market, based on the new PSD2 regulation and related RTS.
- and many more!
Stay tuned for a series of blog posts about updates in the eIDAS universe, related challenges and successful implementations of solutions.
This post was first published on July 31, 2018
- REGULATION (EU) No 910/2014 on electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market and repealing Directive 1999/93/EC (2014) by the European Parliament and the European Commission
- REGULATION (EU) No 1316/2013 establishing the Connecting Europe Facility, amending Regulation (EU) No 913/2010 and repealing Regulations (EC) No 680/2007 and (EC) No 67/2010(12/2013), by the European Parliament and the European Council