Members of European Parliament Vote for the Plan of EU-wide Digital Identity Wallet

March 1, 2024

The Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) have given their consent for a new digital identity framework, with 335 votes in favor, 190 votes in opposition, and 31 abstentions.

MEPs and the European Council collaboratively reached a provisional agreement on November 8, 2023, regarding the establishment of a Europe-wide Digital Identity Framework, eID. Under the new digital identity framework, EU citizens could access essential public services across EU borders digitally.

Following the adoption on Thursday in agreement with the EU Ministers, the framework introduces a new digital ID wallet, as per European Parliament press release. This wallet will enable citizens to authenticate themselves digitally without relying on commercial providers, addressing concerns over privacy, security, and trust.

Use of the digital wallet will be voluntary. During the negotiation process, MEPs adopted measures to uphold citizen’s rights and promote an inclusive digital environment, eliminating discrimination against those who opt not to use digital wallet.

Key Points

  • The law grants EU wallet users access to “qualified electronic signatures”, which are considered highly reliable and hold the same legal authority as handwritten signatures.

  • The law further advocates for wallet-to-wallet interactions to streamline digital transactions.

  • MEPs have also mandated the adoption of an open-source wallet to enhance transparency, drive innovation, and strengthen security measures. Additionally, they imposed robust guidelines for the registration and surveillance of companies involved to maintain accountability and traceability.

  • Through a privacy dashboard, the users will enjoy full authority over their data and can initiate its removal, following the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

While talking about the user’s authority over data, Rapporteur Romana Jerković reportedly stated,

“This legislation aims to empower citizens by putting them in full control of the use and sharing of their data. Digital identity has evolved from being a mere convenience to becoming a catalyst for civic involvement, social empowerment, and a means to foster inclusivity in the digital age.”

The regulation received its final approval from the parliament, with 335 votes in favor, 190 votes in opposition, and 31 abstentions. For the regulation to become law, it awaits to be finally endorsed by the EU Council of Ministers.


Also read: EUDI Wallet Gets Approval from the EU Committee on Industry, Research, and Energy