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The new legislative proposal for electronic identification and eSignatures

© European Union, 1995-2012

The new legislative proposal for electronic identification and eSignatures
© European Union, 1995-2012

For Internet users and businesses electronic authentification technologies, such as eIDs and eSignatures, are essential to guareente secure online transactions and to protect data privacy. The Digital Agenda for Europe has foreseen under the Digital Single Market actions the revision of the existing eSignature Directive (Directive 1999/93/EC) given the fact that there is no comprehensive EU cross-border framework for secure and trustworthy online transactions that encompasses electronic identification, authentication and signatures.

Thus in June 2012 the European Commission published its enhanced proposal for a Regulation on “electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market” to enable cross-border electronic authentification services in the EU, to cover the mutual recognition and acceptance at EU level of notified electronic identification schemes and other essential electronic trust services. The proposal has been supported by several EU studies on the subject (see below) and by results from different large scale pilots projects co-funded under the Competitiveness & Innovation Programme (CIP).

For instance, a recent study from the EC provides a good snapshot on the legal, technical and trust components required to support the proposed EU framework.

The related EP file is 2012/0146(COD): The Committee report tabled for plenary A7-0365/2013  is awaiting 1st reading/single reading.

The European Council adopted conclusions on the Digital Agenda for Europe at its meeting on 24 and 25 October 2013, providing guidance towards the completion of the Digital Single Market by 2015, highlighting that  this proposal be adopted by the end of this Legislative term.

EU Legislation

Legislative overview / General information

Current EC proposal to be disscussed in first reading in the EP.

Current main EU eSignature legislation in place and a report which reviews on its implementation

EU Institutions

European Parliament

European Commission



Stakeholder positions

International organisations


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