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Proposal launched for use of safe digital ID

Woman working with laptop, folder, mobile phone
The new digital e-ID could be downloaded to an app on the mobile phone to use for communication with the administration and with businesses. © Keystone/Christian Beutler

The Swiss government has presented plans for the introduction of a digital identity for citizens to facilitate administrative processes.

Justice Minister Karin Keller-Sutter said the proposed official digital identity would make life easier and speed up public services while taking into account concerns about data security.

The planned e-ID will remain optional and be free of charge, and citizens will continue to be hold analogue versions of ID cards, she told a news conference on Wednesday.

The draft project, which will now be put to consultation among political parties, organisations and institutions ahead of discussions in parliament, foresees that the state will be responsible for issuing the e-ID and its infrastructure.

However, there are no immediate plans to link the e-ID with long-term projects to introduce e-votingExternal link or the electronic collection of signatures for people’s initiatives and referendums, according to the justice ministry.

The new digital ID could be ready by 2025 at the earliest, Keller-Sutter said.

Voters last year rejected a proposed law for an electronic identity system mainly because of fears about data protection.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR