FINAL DECLARATION OF THE EUROPEAN FORUM ON ELECTRONIC SIGNATURE AND TRUST SERVICES 2019
Szczecin, 29-30 May 2019
“Business without paper. Inevitable or impossible?”
The European Forum on Electronic Signature and Trust Services (EFPE) is the largest international conference in Europe dedicated to trust services and electronic identification. In the era of transformation of the digital economy, administrative structures and the societies themselves, these services are being recognized as essential for the implementation of these processes in an efficient, universal and at the same time safe way. The EFPE brings together the international community representing scientific, state, local government, EU and more and more business areas, becoming an obligatory event in the calendar of institutions and experts dealing with these issues.
On 29-30 May 2019 in Szczecin, the 19th edition of the EFPE conference took place. It’s main topic was the question “Business without paper. Inevitable or impossible?”, which the participants attempted to answer during presentations, debates, interviews and backstage talks.
More than 140 participants from all over the world, including in particular from Poland, China, Germany, Russia, Italy, Hungary, Slovakia and Croatia, took part in the EFPE 2019. Among them were representatives of the European Commission and ETSI representing the European Union, while on the Polish side – representatives of the Ministry of Digitization, Ministry of Entrepreneurship and Technology, NASK (Research and Academic Computer Network), Office of Technical Inspection and other institutions of public administration. Also present were representatives of entities utilizing trust services from the sectors of finance, insurance, software manufacturers, service integrators, business and legal advisors. Of course, there were also the providers of trust services, in particular electronic signatures, identity providers and integrators of trust services and those involved in electronic identification.
This year’s conference had a specific objective – to answer questions about which tools of electronic identification (eID) and trust services (UZ) have a perspective for development. It was also discussed how to convince the administration, business and millions of regular users to use them on a daily basis, and what business model to adopt. These issues were also covered by the report prepared by Obserwatorium.biz, “BUSINESS WITHOUT PAPER – Commercialization of eID and trust services in Poland and Europe”, which had its premiere during the Forum and whose conclusions were discussed during the debate on the first day of the conference, with the participation of representatives of Asseco Data Systems, business and public administration, the aim of which was to try to indicate the direction in which the market should develop.
The participants of the Forum agreed that each industry must develop its own solutions based on eID and trust services that are optimal for the sector and its clients, as well as the resulting business model that ensures the profitability of their use. Ultimately, it is possible to imagine using blockchain or biometrics technology to support these services, for example in the financial sector, where employees are increasingly being replaced by artificial intelligence systems. Attention was also drawn to the fact that the currently implemented solutions are based on technologies and concepts developed in the last 20 years – in this context, special attention was paid to the new ID card in the form of a card with an electronic layer. Nowadays, the users are more and more frequently using mobile devices such as smartphones, they search for simple and transparent solutions, while paying attention to security and protection of their personal data. The participants of the conference, especially during the debates, emphasized that this trend will continue in the years to come. New services and products that will be able to meet the expectations of users and the technology that will allow to support mobile devices should already be developed today.
The European Forum for Electronic Signature and Trust Services is an excellent platform for the exchange of experience on a not only European scale, indicating also the greatest opportunities and threats on the way to the electronic economy in Poland, Europe and the world. Trust and electronic ID services are at the doorstep of another, very interesting year, which will be summarized at the next, jubilee 20th edition of the European Forum on Electronic Signature in 2020.
Chairman of the Program Council of EFPE 2019