The second award went to the Police and Border Guard Board of Estonia, part of the Ministry of Interior for the new national eID card.

The new national eID cards with upgraded design and security features in December 2018. It took 18 months to prepare. Both internal and external experts were consulted when drawing up the new card’s design and choosing the security elements including the Estonian Forensic Science Institute and Enterprise Estonia.

The new cards utilise Estonia’s own font and elements of its brand, and feature a colour photo, a transparent window and an invisible secondary photograph that will only appear when viewed from an angle. One new detail is the inclusion of a QR code, which will make it easier to check the validity of the ID card.

The new eID card also integrates a new chip that allows contactless use in the future, once service providers start offering corresponding solutions – validating public transport trips for example. The new chip will retain the traditional interface and can still be used in ID card readers. The chip fits more information and is compatible with new applications, like electronic public transport tickets or other kinds of electronic certification. Giving and reading digital signatures will be possible using the traditional interface only.

Estonia is considered to have one of the most highly-developed national ID card system in the world. Much more than a legal photo ID, the mandatory national card also provides digital access to all of Estonia’s secure eServices. Nearly 5,000 separate eServices enable people to run their daily errands without having to get off their computers at home. They can enter into agreements, sign documents, submit various applications, use digital channels and means to communicate with various state authorities and service providers and so on.

The chip on the new card carries embedded files, and using 2048-bit public key encryption, it can be used as definitive proof of ID in an electronic environment. Thanks to the ID card, Estonia has one of the world’s most advanced digital signature systems. As of January this year, there are approximately 1.3 million ID cards being used in Estonia, which constitutes nearly 98% of the entire population of the country.

The award was presented to Eliisa Sau, Chief Expert of the Police and Border Guard Board of Estonia and Michal Grochowski, Area Sales Director at IDEMIA who supply the new document.