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EU bodies should accept new e-signatures in all transactions, says Kroes

Loek Essers | Oct. 16, 2014
Electronic signatures now have legal force across the European Union, but at the highest levels of government too many procedures are still performed on paper, outgoing European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes said Tuesday.

EU citizens will also reap benefits.

They will be able to carry out secure cross-border electronic transactions, while enrolling in a foreign university or accessing electronic health records should also be made easier with an electronic identification document (eID). Citizens moving to another member state will be able to manage registration and all other administration online, cutting out the paperwork, the Commission said.

What's more, security and privacy concerns should also be reduced, as citizens and businesses can use their own national eIDs to access services online, it added.

The provided legal framework however is only the first step, Kroes said. She called on the private sector to help everyone benefit from the new rules.

The full system still has to be implemented, and that could take a while since rules for trust services will apply from mid-2016 and mandatory mutual recognition of electronic IDs will apply from mid-2018.

 

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