Berlin, 17. August 2022. Currently, there is a lot of talk and reporting about digital identification procedures. Which procedures are secure, which are user-friendly, and which procedures combine security and user-friendliness? In particular, the video ID process (also with AI support) is the subject of heated debate. In addition, there are further reports on Verimi, on which the Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Stefan Imme, comments below:
The shareholders, many of them DAX companies, stand by VERIMI. For several reasons:
- Secure ID wallets are a basic prerequisite for the breakthrough of digitalization in people’s daily lives.
- Business needs efficient digital access for customers, and ID wallets are key to this.
- VERIMI has a significant market lead in ID wallets and practical applications and has proven processes. The ID Wallet is the only one in Germany to have successfully passed the Federal Ministry of the Interior’s approval process for private providers of identification and authentication solutions for interoperable user accounts.
There is no doubt that everyone’s digital identity is becoming the central key to managing everyday life in the digital age. Be it when taking out insurance, opening a bank account, signing up for car-sharing offers, checking into a hotel, activating mobile phone contracts or accessing government portals. This identity must not only be convenient, but also secure. The European way is: we are working on a solution where consumers’ data can be used securely and conveniently and is only used for the actual purpose – and not for other purposes. That’s very important, for example, because it’s a matter of not profiling consumers or generating advertising messages based on this data. The sovereignty of citizens is the highest good to which we are committed.
We have come a long way along this path. The German ID card with all its electronic security features is the anchor of trust for users in the digital age. In the future, the ID card will open the doors to all security-relevant digital applications. The key is to strike the right balance between maximum security and the best possible user experience. We must not trip ourselves up on the way to the digital age. Comprehensive bans in response to individual security concerns would be an overreaction. They would set back the rapid progress of digitization in Germany and Europe.
What kind of digital identification procedure do we need?
The ideal would be an identification procedure that is both secure and easy to use. The most secure is the electronic ID card. All people can store the data from their electronic ID card in the VERIMI ID Wallet – very securely according to the specifications of the German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI). This can be done either directly in the ID-Wallet or during the application at many acceptance partners. You can then use your cell phone to access digital services conveniently and securely.
Of course, there will continue to be other, simple identification methods for different use cases, depending on the security needs for the particular application. After all, it makes a difference whether a consumer loads his ID card data into his personal ID wallet in order to take care of official business digitally or to identify himself at the doctor’s office – or whether he simply wants to order a toothpaste via his e-commerce account and have his data conveniently at hand for this purpose. Different use cases on the market require different levels of security. Depending on requirements, as convenient as possible, as secure as necessary – that is VERIMI’s differentiated offering.
In addition, VERIMI has a unique selling point when it comes to the security of its processes. This is because the VERIMI ID wallet is the only one in Germany to have successfully passed the approval process by the German Federal Ministry of the Interior for the “Substantial” security level, which is required, for example, for access to public administration services. This level is also the basis for data security in the healthcare sector. Here, the electronic ID card is loaded in a cryptographically secured manner and verified using the personal ID card PIN. This is perhaps a time-consuming process once. After that, however, consumers can always use their ID card securely, easily and conveniently in the digital world, for example when concluding contracts digitally, opening accounts, accessing insurance portals or going to the authorities digitally.
VERIMI is thus a very important building block for the ecosystem of secure digital identities in Germany – for the benefit of public authorities, companies and consumers alike. As a shareholder, we are convinced that our service and product portfolio will make a significant contribution to digitization made in Germany and to the digital sovereignty of German citizens and companies.
And what about other reports about VERIMI?
Both of the allegations in the room are inaccurate.
- In the case of the alleged data protection incident, VERIMI acted in absolute compliance with the GDPR and actively informed the competent data protection authority. In its final report, the authority assessed the measures taken by VERIMI as appropriate. We regret that uncertainty has now arisen among some users as a result of the reporting.
- VERIMI is also accused of having deceived the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) for obtaining a ZAG license (license as a payment provider). However, BaFin does not specify figures relating to partner companies and transactions for obtaining this license; instead, it requires proof of sustainable and commercial business operations. In this respect, the figures reported were purely internal company goals. In a conversation with the VERIMI management on August 05, 2022, the representatives of BaFin and the Bundesbank did not see any approach for deception and no basis for measures.
In one sentence: VERIMI’s shareholders stand by their company without reservation.
Chairman of the Supervisory Board VERIMI GmbH
Chief Digital Officer Volkswagen Financial Services AG