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European Union Agrees on Digital Identity Wallets for Citizens

The European Parliament and the Council of the European Union have reached a final agreement on the establishment of “European Digital Identity Wallets,” a fully digital identification system for all Europeans. The voluntary digital wallets will contain digital versions of ID cards, driving licenses, diplomas, medical records, and bank account information. Citizens can use these wallets to access online services and prove their identity across Europe. The agreement is subject to formal approval and, once adopted, will enter into force to enhance the digitalization of public services.

The EU will offer digital wallets to citizens on a voluntary basis, containing digital versions of essential documents for online services. Citizens can use the digital wallets to access public and private online services securely and protect personal data across Europe.The initiative aligns with the Digital Decade 2030 targets for digitalizing public services and improving digital accessibility.

The agreement is subject to formal approval by the European Parliament and the Council before entering into force.Some conservative lawmakers and cybersecurity experts have raised concerns about potential abuse and privacy implications in an all-encompassing digital identity system.The EU Commissioner’s comment about putting something in the Digital Identity Wallet has raised concerns about a potential connection between central bank digital currency (CBDC) and electronic ID.

Over 500 privacy and cybersecurity experts from 39 countries signed a joint letter warning that the legislation fails to properly respect citizens’ right to privacy and secure online communications.Dutch MEP Rob Roos has urged citizens to let their MEPs know about their opposition to the Digital Identity and to vote against it in Parliament.

The move toward digital identity wallets aligns with broader EU efforts to enhance digitalization and provide secure online services for citizens. However, concerns about privacy, security, and potential abuse have been raised by some experts and lawmakers.

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