As of today, the EU Gateway, the technical foundation of the EU Digital COVID Certificate, goes live with seven EU Member States on board. More and more countries will join in the coming days and weeks, allowing our different certificates to be recognised across borders, just in time for the summer season.
The EU gateway, developed and operated by SAP and T-Systems, is hosted at the Commission's data centre in Luxembourg, where it relies on infrastructure trusted by all Member States and on the Commission’s strong experience in running EU-wide IT systems. DG Informatics, the corporate IT service of the Commission, is responsible for the security, stability and reliability of this infrastructure (availability, operating system, database systems, etc.). To ensure smooth implementation and the highest level of security, DG Informatics tested the code and the overall system before launching it. Data centre teams are continuously monitoring the system’s performance to be able to detect any risk early on.
Johannes Hahn, Commissioner for Budget and Administration, said:
The launch of the EU Gateway is an important step towards re-opening Europe just in time for summer. Our lives will now be getting back to normal thanks to the reliability of EU’s secure infrastructure, our fully interoperable systems and the excellent use of open source to develop IT solutions together.
Interoperability is key to this EU-wide achievement. The EU Gateway ensures connectivity between Member States by linking the national systems. Via the Gateway, Member States share their digital signatures with each other and can therefore verify the authenticity of any vaccination, COVID test or recovery indicated in the EU Digital COVID Certificates, without accessing personal data. Member States, supported by the Commission, have agreed on all technical specifications for the EU Digital COVID Certificates, their interoperability and full compliance with personal data protection. The specifications are openly available.
Mário Campolargo, Director-General of DG Informatics, said:
The EU Gateway shows the value of interoperability between public administrations for a truly connected Europe. Our main goal at DG Informatics is to bring together the right processes and IT specialists that will keep the EU Digital COVID Certificate system safely up and running in our data centre where it can rely on trusted EU infrastructure!
The Commission is continuing to support Member States in developing software that authorities can use to issue properly signed EU Digital COVID Certificates and to check the certificates issued in any other participating Member State. Open source implementations of all main components have been prepared and made available by the Commission. These are published on GitHub and used by 12 Member States.The technology behind the gateway is also based on open source and therefore fully transparent and reusable. No personal data of certificate holders will pass through the gateway, as this is not necessary for the verification.
DG Informatics will continue to support with secure infrastructure and its IT services the Directorates‑General leading this vital EU project, the DG for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (CNECT) and the DG for Health and Food Safety (SANTE).
More about the EU Digital COVID Certificate
On 17 March 2021, the European Commission presented a proposal to create an EU Digital COVID Certificate to facilitate the safe and free movement of citizens within the EU during the COVID-19 pandemic. Following a provisional agreement between the Parliament and the Council, the work on the technical implementation took place in parallel to the ongoing legislative process, to ensure a smooth roll-out of the certificates across the EU by June 2021.
The EU Digital COVID Certificate will be safe and secure, valid in all EU Member States, free of charge and available both in the national languages and in English. Available in digital format or on paper, it will be a proof that a person has been vaccinated against COVID-19, tested negative, or recovered from an infection.
Read more in the press release of the European Commission.
1 June 2021