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17. April 2020

A faster return to normality: OSD presents digital immunity card

How can the state, economy and society restart their systems without risk after the major corona shutdown? This question is of concern to affected states, companies and institutions. „In the Corona world, two factors create more security: Tests – and the secure knowledge of who is already considered immune based on scientific criteria,“ says Lukas Praml, Managing Director of the Austrian State Printing Office.

Since more reliable products and a broad roll-out can be expected in the foreseeable future for immunity tests, the experts at the digital State Printing Office subsidiary youniqx Identity AG have designed the „Restart.ID“. The Restart.ID system supports the economy and society during start-up and combines the high-security expertise of the State Printing Office with the digital know-how of youniqx Identity AG. The concept envisages combining official proof of the user’s identity based on the passport with proof of existing immunity. Future users would be able to prove their identity and immunity quickly and securely via smartphone upon request, e.g. from an authority.

Concept relies on voluntary action and data protection

„Restart.ID“ can support authorities as well as citizens on the difficult way back into everyday life. The concept is based on decentralisation, voluntariness and data protection. „The personal data is always decentralised and thus stored in encrypted format only on the personal smartphone. There is no central database“, emphasizes State Printing Office Managing Director Praml.

Open Source for full transparency

In certain situations, e.g. a border crossing, the explicit consent of the user is required for sharing his or her own data with an inquiring party, such as a border official. The user can see beforehand which data is being requested and can decide whether he or she agrees to the sharing. If the user decides to do so, the exchange takes place directly with the officer’s device. The user thus always retains full sovereignty over his or her personal data. To guarantee transparency, Restart.ID will also be implemented as an open source project. For this purpose, youniqx Identity AG is already in professional coordination with Univ.-Prof. Dr. Barbara Prainsack and Univ.-Prof. Dr. Nikolaus Forgo from the University of Vienna regarding data protection and ethical questions.

Clear and highly secure concept

The concept is based on the active involvement of public actors – authorities, executive, medical. However, Restart.ID can only develop real support with the help of citizens. Therefore, the app should be particularly accessible and allow easy use without any technical knowledge:

  • After the app download and the user’s consent, the user’s own smartphone is placed on the personal passport.
  • With the user’s OK, „Restart.ID“ can display the information contained in the passport chip (portrait picture, name, date of birth).
  • This personal data is not forwarded, but remains encrypted on the user’s own device.
  • Afterwards, test results of already completed COVID19 tests can be read in e.g. by QR code.
  • If required, the identity and immunity can be verified by smartphone at any time after the data subject has issued their consent.

No compulsion, but voluntary extension

„Restart.ID“ should only be used on a voluntary basis. „We want to offer optional assistance to all those who wish to make use of it. In any case, „Restart.ID“ should not be used exclusively or on a mandatory basis,“ Praml clarifies. Persons without a smartphone or any intention to use it should not suffer any disadvantage. „It goes without saying that there must be parallel possibilities for analogue identification.“

Important support for travel and healthcare

The „Restart.ID“ concept is intended to help states and citizens alike to return to their accustomed freedom of travel more quickly in the future by making border crossings uncomplicated, secure, and digital. Restart.ID could also bring benefits in the health care sector. „If critical professionals or patients can easily identify themselves as immune, this will save on protective equipment“, Praml outlines.

Cross-border use as a goal

The Austrian State Printing Office has the know-how to implement Restart.ID quickly. „We are convinced that Restart.ID can provide massive support to states, companies and private individuals in their difficult return to normality. However, this aid can only make sense if we work together with strong partners at state level and with the support of the health sector to implement it. Together, we can make a decisive contribution within a few weeks towards a return to normality „, Praml concludes.

For further information, please contact:

Mag. Thomas Pascher
Communications Manager
Österreichische Staatsdruckerei GmbH
M: +43 664 88690977 | pascher@staatsdruckerei.at