Estonians are pathfinders, who have built an efficient, secure and transparent ecosystem that saves time and money. e-Estonia invites you to follow the digital journey. The initial part introduces and demonstrates the underlying mechanisms involved in digitizing a society, an overview of the main challenges and policies, an understanding of the infrastructure, e-solutions and services.
World-leading electronic identity and timestamping solutions
Estonia has by far the most advanced national ID card system in the world. Much more than a legal photo ID, the mandatory national card also provides digital access to all of Estonia’s secure e-services. In cooperation of SK ID Solutions and Cybernetica the so-called Smart ID was developed. Smart-ID is an app based new generation electronic identity designed to use conveniently on smart devices, while still keeping high level of security.
X-road data exchange between government and private sector entities
X-Road® is a distributed information exchange platform that makes it possible for these different systems to communicate all across the governmental sector; for example, the police can access data from the health system, tax board or business registry and vice versa. But to do this X-Road must satisfy three criteria. First the platform must be interoperable and technically easy for each member of the system to access the data they need. Second, the data cannot be corrupted in transit by the system or an external third party. And third, the data must be protected from prying eyes so that unauthorised individuals cannot view the content of the data en route.
X-Road® has satisfied all three criteria since 2001, performing all the required functions for the state and the people of Estonia. It has enabled to increase the depth of cooperation between public organisations and reduced paper work exponentially so that public employees can concentrate on tasks that require human interaction.
Nordic Institute for Interoperability Solutions (NIIS) is a non-profit association with the mission to ensure the development and strategic management of X-Road® and other cross-border components for digital government infrastructure. The republics of Estonia, Finland and Iceland are members of NIIS.
The e-Government development in Estonia is led by the office of Deputy Secretary General for Digital Development (Ministry of Economic Affairs). This section would cover how Estonia has reached this level, what is needed to keep the services up to date and what are the future plans.
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