The digital economies of European countries could account for up to 28% of GDP by 2020, but that depends on the successful roll-outs of electronic identities, according to the Secure Identity Alliance (SIA).
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“To unleash that potential, trust has to be established, but that relies on how electronic identities are managed going forward,” said Frederic Trojani, chairman of the SIA.
Governments, as the source of trust in the physical world, are the logical key players in establishing trust in the digital world, he told the Secure Document World (SDW) 2013 conference in London.
Government stands to be one of the biggest beneficiaries of a successful e-ID programme, through cutting service delivery costs and increased efficiency in tax collection, said Trojani.
“Studies indicate that e-ID could bring annual economic benefits to Europe of €330bn by 2020, but only if properly managed and trusted by all,” he said.
In light of the benefits of e-ID and security challenges, the SIA was set up in March 2013 by Gemalto, 3M, Morpho and Oberthur Technologies to help public bodies deliver e-government services.
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The SIA has identified privacy, security, interoperability and convenience as the four most important guiding principles.
“But the road to achieving these things is a long and hard one, so the SIA aims to provide a forum where collective actions can be designed and implemented,” said Trojani.
Studies have shown that, at present, only 15% of e-government initiatives are completely successful, 50% achieve only partial success and 30% are abandoned and never implemented.
“The main objective of the SIA is to accelerate the transition to smart e-IDs to support open, interoperable and efficient roll-outs of e-government services, “ said Trojani.