Sophia Antipolis, 10 June 2014

The international Porvoo Group conference convened in the ETSI headquarters in Sophia Antipolis, France, 22-23 May 2014, considered questions related to European electronic identity and safe online services. Participants came from nine European countries.

The themes of the conference included electronic identities, trust services for electronic transactions (for example, electronic signatures, time stamps and documents, as well as website verification) and matters connected with the protection of privacy. The conference focused on the regulation of strong electronic identification and trust services, as well as the presentation of interoperable solutions. 

Topics of interest also included safe identification services running on various technical platforms and the national electronic identity development projects ongoing in the participating countries. Country updates were heard from Belgium, Estonia, Finland, Germany and the United Kingdom. One of the goals at the conference was to be able to hear governmental representatives and their needs concerning the eIDAS regulation and implementation to national schemes.

Moreover, attendees heard about the STORK project, which is underway in the European Union. Its objective is to make it possible to engage in online services and transactions across borders by means of a national electronic ID. STORK specifications will define the minimum standard of national identification solutions.

The Porvoo Group, now operating at a European level, will continue to listen to the lessons learned and try to find a working electronic ID model, not forgetting its original task to promote strong authentication models in trans-national, interoperable electronic identity.

At the close of the conference, a roundtable discussion between government representatives and standardization specialists was organized to address the demands of trust services, as well as the minimum level of national identities. Participants agreed to continue the discussion on requirements and use cases and from this, ETSI will collect input for its cross-sector standardization initiatives, related to a smart secure platform.