The European Union (EU) intends to launch a digital ID wallet that combines identification and payment functions into a single app. The ambitious wallet, proposed by the EU’s executive commission, would be available for use across the bloc’s 27 countries and by its 450 million residents, the Associated Press reported.
Called the European Digital Identity Wallet, the app would store electronic forms of identification and other official documents – including driver’s licenses, prescriptions, and school diplomas – and allow users to access public or private services both online and offline.
Accordingly, the app can be potentially used to open bank accounts, sign apartment leases, enrol in universities as well as rent a car at an airport while skipping the usual wait. At nightclubs, people wanting to enter can simply show the app to security guards to verify their ages.
#EUdigitalidentity (provided by your country) will enable us to do in any MS what we do at home with no extra cost & less hurdle – renting a flat, opening a bank account. Will give you control of how much info you wish to share about yourselves: https://t.co/cJ60tPhoOD #DigitalEU pic.twitter.com/u6e2UDFimx
— Margrethe Vestager (@vestager) June 3, 2021
Margrethe Vestager, the European Commission’s executive vice president for digital, said the proposed app “will enable us to do in any member state as we do at home without any extra cost and fewer hurdles.”
According to the EU Commission, the wallet will be available to all EU residents, but it won’t be compulsory. Even so, dominant online platforms would be required to accept the wallet – the EU has been trying to curb the power of big tech companies, especially in regards to their control of user data.