The European Parliament and the Council of the EU have reached a final agreement on the regulations around introducing European Digital Identity Wallets.
According to the European Commission, legislative discussions have strengthened several key areas. For instance, the Wallet will contain a dashboard of all transactions accessible to its holder, offer the possibility to report alleged violations of data protection, and allow interaction between wallets. As well as this, citizens will be able to onboard the wallet with existing national eID schemes and benefit from free eSignatures for non-professional use.
The implementation of a legal framework follows the results of a provisional political agreement which were announced in June. The agreement marks an important step towards Digital Decade 2030 targets which will see all EU citizens offered the chance to have an EU Digital Identity Wallet to access public and private online services.
In addition to public services, EU Digital Identity Wallet holders will be able to use the wallet to log into large online platforms such as Amazon, Booking.com and Facebook as well as access private services that legally require authentication. They will be able to use the Wallet to open bank accounts, make payments and hold digital documents, such as a mobile Driving Licence, a medical prescription, a professional certificate or a travel ticket.
Taking the next step
The agreement reached by the co-legislators now must be formally approval by the European Parliament and the Council before its measures can be formally adopted.
Member States will have to provide EU Digital Identity Wallets to their citizens 24 months after the adoption of Implementing Acts setting out the technical specifications for the Wallet. These Implementing Acts will draw on the specifications developed as part of the EU Digital Identity Toolbox, and will set the conditions for implementing the wallets all across Europe.
Speaking on the latest agreement, Věra Jourová, Vice-President of the European Commission, said: “The EU Digital Identity Wallet will usher in a new era of the Digital Decade, as a convenient and safe way to manage personal digital documents and access public and private online services daily. Europeans will have control over their personal data and will be able to easily share it, if they want to, from an app on their phone.”
Thierry Breton, Commissioner for Internal Market added: “Today’s agreement is a major step towards the EU’s 2030 goal of giving all European citizens the possibility to use a secure and privacy-preserving digital identity. The EU Digital Identity Wallet will give citizens control over their data and enhance security when they engage with online services. It will strengthen Europe’s technological sovereignty and help us address today’s and tomorrow’s challenges in digitalisation.”