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Establishment of an electronic identity (E-ID) that is valid nationally and internationally

The aim of the strategic project is that Swiss people can prove their identity electronically with the same quality as if they were presenting their passport or identity card physically.

Aims of the strategic project

Sufficient knowledge about the other party's identity is a key prerequisite for processing transactions. That is why the state issues means of identification such as the Swiss passport, identity card or residence permit for foreign nationals. In the digital world, almost every individual system currently has its own identification mechanism, which generates high costs. Business and administrative processes could be made more efficient and carried out online with state-recognised electronic means of identification (E-ID).

The E-ID is a key infrastructure component on which further digital services for seamless digital e-government, e-banking, e-commerce, e-health, e-education and e-voting are built. It should make an important contribution to Switzerland's digital transformation in the process.

Consultation

Business processes are increasingly being moved to the digital world. To make it possible for more demanding transactions to be carried out online too, the business partners need to be able to trust the identity of the other party. Consequently, the Federal Council wishes to create the legal and organisational framework for the recognition of electronic means of identification and their providers.

Division of tasks between the state and the market

The Federal Council is envisaging a division of tasks between the state and the market. Concretely, suitable private or public identification service providers should be able to obtain authorisation from a federal certification body to issue state-recognised electronic means of identification. In this regard, it should be possible for systems that already exist or are being developed, e.g. the projects of Swiss Post, SBB, banks and Swisscom, to be recognised by the Confederation as well.

Issuing only for eligible people

A state-recognised E-ID will enable holders to register securely for online services and to log on again securely at a later time. The issuing of electronic identities should be possible for two categories of people: 1. Swiss citizens who have a valid Swiss passport at the time of issuing; 2. foreigners with a residence permit who have a valid foreign passport at the time of issuing.

Measures supported in the strategic plan

Measure / Deliverable Deadline
Development of a «demonstrator» and a design recommendation (best practices) for state-recognised eID systems as a contribution to communication and marketing Completed
Creation of a standardisation framework for state-recognised eID systems which ensures unobstructed interoperability and is compatible with EU regulations

31.12.2018

Establishment of a legal framework for state-recognised eID systems which are accepted by all federal portals which require authentication and which must be EU compatible.

31.12.2019

Creation of an attribute interface at the State Identity Service (SIS).

31.12.2019

Project status

By the end of 2017, the Federal Council took note of the results of the consultation on a Federal Act on Recognised Electronic Means of Identification (E-ID Act) and determined the next steps.

Documentation

Federal Office of Police (fedpol) – E-ID

Organisation responsible

Federal Office of Police fedpol

Contact person: Markus Waldner

Contact: markus.waldner(at)fedpol.admin.ch, +41 58 465 74 41