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practice Approaching the Challenge of eID Interoperability: An Austrian Perspective

Surviving in the Digital eID World | Articles12345678

Approaching the Challenge of eID Interoperability: An Austrian Perspective

Publication Date: 29 February 2012
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Topic: eIdentity and eSecurity, Interoperability
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eGovernment is a key enabler for efficient public administrations and user-friendly governmental procedures. Electronic identities (eID) are crucial for any eGovernment infrastructure as they allow for the remote identification of citizens during online processes.

Most EU Member States have already rolled out eIDs for their citizens on a national level. Due to country-specific legal, social, and technical requirements, existing national eID solutions are usually not interoperable. In a converging European society, cross-border applicability of eID based services is of increasing importance. To overcome existing limitations, the European Commission has launched the large scale pilot STORK, which aims to establish an eID interoperability layer based on existing nationalsolutions. Integration of this interoperability layer into existing national eID infrastructures raises various challenges on a technical, organisational and legal level. In this article we focus on the Austrian situation and show how the faced challenges have been overcome. We discuss both the Austrian national eID infrastructure and the STORK interoperability layer and show how these two components have been smoothly combined in order to open the Austrian eGovernment landscape for European citizens.

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