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IAS: Study on an electronic identification, authentication and signature policy 2011-2012

20 September 2012

The aim of the study is to devise building blocks for an electronic identification, authentication and signature (IAS) policy for the European Union, as well as related electronic trusted services and credentials. These concepts are not uniformly defined at the European level, and their interaction is not yet well understood. The IAS approach at the European level is still highly fragmented. The electronic signatures framework (Directive 1999/93/EC) can serve as a starting point. Α new framework could provide solutions to solve remaining e-signature interoperability issues, to address e-identification and also ancillary and related trust services and credentials (such as time stamping, e-signature long term archiving, electronic seals, certified e-documents delivery,…). The study is conducted by DLA Piper together with its subcontractors Sealed, Time.lex, PwC and Studio Notarile Genghini and it is financed by the European Commission (ref SMART 2010/0008). The study, started in May 2011 will end in October 2012. The scope of the study covers the following tasks: Task 1. Assessing the various hypotheses and issues regarding a policy on electronic identification, authentication and signature. Task 2. Identifying valuable findings and recommendations in the past and on-going undertakings supported by the European Commission as well as in major third parties initiatives, also in available legislation, to use as input material for an IAS framework. Task 3. Providing building blocks of a pan-European IAS framework, including ancillary credentials and services. This will build on the findings of tasks 1 and 2. In addition, the study team will provide selected ad-hoc technical and legal support to the European Commission.

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