Deutsche Telekom, o2 Telefónica, and Vodafone are participating in the largest of the European Union’s digital ID pilots, the mobile operators have revealed. Deutsche Telekom says that the “Potential” project is the largest of the EU’s four field tests, and that Telekom and its MNO partners are involved in enabling consumers to use their digital IDs to activate SIM cards while fighting potential fraud.
While the Potential project spans 19 countries, the MNOs’ tests are taking place across a handful of nations: Germany, Austria, France, Poland, Greece, the Netherlands, and Ukraine.
“Anyone who identifies themselves uniquely online creates trust,” commented Deutsche Telekom board member and T-Systems CEO Adel Al-Saleh. “Almost all areas of life can benefit from this. At the same time, we are clearing our daily jungle of usernames and passwords. That’s why we are involved in the European Union’s field tests.”
The news comes after the digital identity and security technologies giant IDEMIA announced its own participation in the Potential consortium near the start of this year. At the time, IDEMIA explained that its pilot would be focused on six particular use cases of the EU Digital Identity Wallet: “Electronic Government services”, “Account opening”, “SIM registration”, “Mobile Driving Licence”, “Remote Qualified Electronic Signature”, and “Electronic Prescription”.
While the EU Digital Identity Wallet is still in the early stages of gestation, there are signs that biometric technologies could play a role in identity verification and authentication. IDEMIA is known, among other things, for its biometric technologies; and another of the European Union’s pilot consortia, dubbed “NOBID” (for “Nordic Baltic eID”) includes iProov, a specialist in selfie-based identity verification.
Biometric identity verification or authentication would seem to align with the overall goals of the EU authorities spearheading the effort. As European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen explains, consumers have little insight into what happens to the data they submit when creating digital identities and accounts for various online services. “This is why the Commission will soon propose a secure European digital identity,” von der Leyen says, “One that we trust, and that citizens everywhere in Europe can use to do everything from pay taxes to rent a bike. A technology with which we ourselves can control what data is used and how.”
Source: Deutsche Telekom
July 10, 2023 – by Alex Perala