After three years of operation, the STORK project (Secure idenTity acrOss boRders linKed) is coming to an end. It was recently announced in an IT magazine that STORK 2.0, its successor, will start in January 2012.
STORK has been aimed at developing an architecture that ensures interoperability between all European identification systems. As such, it is one of the facilitators of the 'Digital Single Market', which is a founding pillar of the Digital Agenda for Europe.
"Regardless of the activities they carry out, one must first introduce themselves. This is such a basis that STORK 1.0 set up," said Frank Leyman, International Relations Manager at Fedict (Belgium's Federal Government Department for ICT), one of the STORK's 32 consortium partners.
Coming back on STORK's achievements during the past three years, Mr Leyman added: "We have built an architecture that we tested within a few pilot projects. They all work properly, but in a pilot context. The conclusion of the final report will be the following: from a technological point of view, it works, but several question marks remain, in particular from a legal point of view," Mr Leyman explained.
STORK 1.0 only identified citizens; STORK 2.0 will expand this scope. "Starting in January 2012, we will provide additional 'attributes' to citizens so that they can identify themselves in the framework of their professional environment. We will also add business identification." he said.
The goal is for member states to implement STORK rapidly. Mr Leyman went on: "The European Commission does not want to wait for the end of STORK 2.0. The purpose is to start inviting countries to implement [it] by 2013." STORK 2.0 has already attracted the interest of 19 countries and over 50 partners.
STORK is intended to establish a Europe-wide eID interoperability platform that enables citizens to securely use their national electronic identities in any Member State in order to access public eGovernment services, in full compliance with data protection and privacy principles. STORK 1.0 includes 17 EU Member States and Associated Countries, with a total of 32 consortium partners.