Estonia has by far the most highly-developed 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.
The chip on the card carries embedded files, and using 2048-bit public key encryption, it can be used as definitive proof of ID in an electronic environment.
Here are some examples of how it is regularly used in Estonia:
Thanks to the ID-card, Estonia has one of the world’s most advanced digital signature systems.
To learn more about the ID-card, visit its webpage
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Mobile-ID allows people to use a mobile phone as a form of secure digital ID. Like the ID-card, it can be used to access secure e-services and digitally sign documents, but has the added advantage of not requiring a card reader.
The system is based on a special mobile SIM card, which the customer must request from the mobile phone operator. Private keys are stored on the mobile SIM card along with a small application delivering the authentication and signature functions.
Here’s how it is used to log into a secure site, for instance a bank account:
As smart phones have become standard, having the Mobile-ID option will become increasingly handy, allowing users to vote, for instance, via a phone’s web browser.
To learn more visit the Mobile-ID webpage
Estonia is creating a borderless digital society for global citizens as the first country to offer e-Residency.
E-Residency is a transnational digital identity that anyone in the world can apply for to obtain access to a platform built on inclusion, legitimacy and transparency. E-residents then have access to the EU business environment and can use public e-services through their digital identity.
The primary reason e-residents are joining this community is to run a trusted location-independent EU business online with all the tools needed to conduct business globally.
E-residents receive a digital ID-card with two PIN numbers for secure digital authentication and digital signatures. Secure digital signatures are legally equivalent to a handwritten signature and face-to-face identification in Estonia, as well as between partners upon agreement anywhere around the world.
e-Residency is Estonia’s gift to the world – the opportunity for anyone, anywhere to succeed as an entrepreneur.
Smart-ID is a convenient new mobile application that works as an identification solution for anyone that does not have a SIM card in their smart device but needs to securely prove their online identity. As a simple, easy to use and convenient alternative to bank code cards, with it you can log in to financial sector e-services and confirm transactions and agreements.
As of November 2018, Smart-ID is recognized as QSCD (Qualified Signature Creation Device). This is the highest level of recognition in the EU and now all users can digitally sign documents on Qualified Electronic Signature (QES) level that must be recognized by every EU member state. Read more here.
You can use it on smartphones and tablets. You only need a Wi-Fi network or mobile internet connection to use it, no data roaming or special SIM cards are necessary.
Using Smart-ID for personal identification is free, totally unlimited and the app can be downloaded to any Android and iOS smart devices.
These e-Identity solutions are provided by the following Estonian companies:
Find out more about the services and know-how of the Estonian IT sector
The goal of e-Estonia Briefing Centre is to inspire global policy makers, political leaders, corporate executives, investors and international media with the success story of e-Estonia and build links to leading IT service providers.