In a fast-moving interconnected world in which life stories are unfolding online just as much as in the real world, trust has become an important mechanism that is essential in how we navigate our personal and business relationships. From building new connections, pursuing interests or finding new loves, to making online payments, signing property deals and expanding businesses, all is possible in an online environment provided there is trust.
Over the last months, in the face of a global pandemic, which confined us to our homes and shifted much of our life entirely to the digital dimension, the security of our online activities across Europe has become an urgency and a necessity. We must feel reassured that we are protected online. That is why the EU is introducing rules to strengthen trust services.
And how can we create more trust in the online environment? It is about cybersecurity, of course, but not only about that. There are new technologies such as blockchain that can play a role in making services more trustworthy with secure digital identities and contracts. This helps us be sure of the person or business we are dealing with online.
Trust services themselves help us to authenticate these digital identities, allowing us to sign documents online, receive a sales receipt, and ensure we are buying real not counterfeit products. Indeed, thanks to technology, trust has morphed from an intangible feeling to a digital reality.
From mundane tasks we do not even notice, such as confirming our identity when accessing online accounts, to smoothly interacting with government services and signing business contracts – electronic identification (eID) and trust services are enabling new online tasks that just a couple of years ago required signatures, in-person-meetings, stamps and letters.
As we move ahead in the digital decade, the EU will be looking to introduce even more trust in our daily online activities.