“NewP@ss” Research Project Boosts Security Technologies for Next Generation ePassports and eGovernment Applicationsorts and eGovernment Applications
Contactless, multifunctional, fast and secure features are critical requirements for the new generation of travel documents. Achieving the combination of security and convenience that travellers require to pass through border checkpoints quickly and securely, in addition to providing travellers with access to online services from their smartphone, is a challenge.
In the past three years, issues concerning the security of electronic identity documents have been addressed by the “NewP@ss” research project. Research is conducted by security chip providers Infineon Technologies AG (FSE: IFX / OTCQX: IFNNY) and NXP Semiconductors Germany GmbH (NXP) as well as Giesecke & Devrient (G&D), a specialist for secure chip card systems. The companies are part of a consortium of 15 European enterprises and research institutions within the EUREKA programme CATRENE. The project was part-funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), which has injected approximately EURO 4 million into the venture.
The consortium has developed data structures and new security chip architectures that are being integrated into the latest globally applicable standards for travel documents. In addition to the ID holder’s biometric data, the newest electronic travel documents can electronically record visa data and arrival and departure stamps. This makes it possible to update ePassports and similar documents during their relatively long period of validity rather than replacing them, e.g. in the case of a name change due to marriage or an address change after a move.
Citizens are increasingly mobile, with electronic services constantly available on smartphones and other mobile devices. The consortium researched the secure use of digital identity document for smartphones and tablets in support of increased mobility. The experts considered open architectures and tested new security mechanisms at both software and hardware levels. The primary focus was placed on contactless communication with an eID Card, secure mobile user authentication, and confidential data input and output within a protected computing environment.
The “NewP@ss” research project received investment of approximately EURO 30 million, half of which was covered by business and industry partners and the other half by the governments of five member states of the European Union. The German contribution was approximately EURO 8.7 million.
Biometric travel documents are currently issued in all 28 EU states with its approximately 500 million residents. Electronic identity cards are used in 23 European countries. Other European states have already announced that they will introduce electronic identity cards in the next few years or begin issuing the next generation, which this research project helped to develop. A total of 120 states have distributed around 500 million electronic travel documents since 2006.
About Giesecke & Devrient
Giesecke & Devrient (G&D) is a leading international technology provider headquartered in Munich, Germany. Founded in 1852, the Group has a workforce of over 11,450 employees and generated sales of approximately EUR 1.83 billion in the 2014 fiscal year. 58 subsidiaries and joint ventures in 31 countries ensure customer proximity worldwide. G&D develops, produces, and distributes products and solutions in the payment, secure communication, and identity management sectors. G&D is a technology leader in these markets and holds a strong competitive position. The Group’s customer base mainly comprises central and commercial banks, mobile network operators, business enterprises, governments, and public authorities. For more information, please visit: www.gi-de.com.
Infineon Technologies AG is a world leader in semiconductors. Infineon offers products and system solutions addressing three central challenges to modern society: energy efficiency, mobility and security. In the 2014 fiscal year (ending September 30), the company reported sales of EURO 4.3 billion with about 29,800 employees worldwide. In January 2015, Infineon acquired US-based International Rectifier Corporation, a leading provider of power management technology, with revenues of USD 1.1 billion (fiscal year 2014 ending June 29) and approximately 4,200 employees. Infineon is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: IFX) and in the USA on the over-the-counter market OTCQX International Premier (ticker symbol: IFNNY). Further information is available at www.infineon.com.
About NXP Semiconductors
NXP Semiconductors N.V. (NASDAQ: NXPI) provides solutions that create secure connections for a networked and more intelligent world. Building on its expertise in the high performance mixed signal field, NXP drives innovation in the automotive, identification and mobile electronics industry and in the fields of wireless infrastructure, lighting, health care, industrial and entertainment electronics and computer technology. A global semiconductor company with operations in more than 25 countries, NXP posted a revenue of $5.65 billion in 2014. Additional in-formation can be found by visiting www.nxp.com.
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