2016/03 : Handbook #1 – Digital Identities

Digital systems enable the individual to choose, depending on the contexts in which he finds himself, the way in which he wishes to present himself to others and to establish relationships, e.g. as a "father", a "music fan" or a "job seeker". But there is an opposite trend whereby the multiple activities of a person who presents himself under different identities are reduced to a unique identity. It can be seen at work both in the private and public sectors.

This Handbook thus looks at the ways in which France and the countries of the European Union intend to set up identity management systems across the whole of society. The aim in particular is to improve the security of the means of identification used by citizens and to simplify their administrative formalities. At the same time, the trend strengthens the transparency of the various facets of the individual, and increases risks of surveillance.

What are the effects of this trend towards unification of identities from the philosophical, ethical, legal, economic and computer science viewpoints? Is this unification desirable? Could it be desirable in certain cases? How do governments and companies intend to identify us? How can we make sure that a person is allowed the leeway he needs to present himself and to enter into a relationship with others autonomously? Is the use of pseudonyms an appropriate response?

Designed to provide practical help, this Handbook is aimed at a readership of ordinary citizens, companies and the public authorities.

You will find below a selection of articles ("Units") translated from this first Handbook of the Chair.

Unit 1 - The Construction of Identity in Contemporary Society: Theoretical Issues

Unit 2 - The Role of Law in Finding a Balance between Identification and Personal Self-fulfilment

Unit 3 - Reflections on the Changing Use of Digital Identity in Computer Science

Unit 4 - The Economic Issues relating to Digital Identities

Unit 5 - How a Digital Identity System Works

Unit 6 - Digital Identity and Personal Data Management

Unit 7 - Embedding the Principles of Personal Data Protection in Digital Identity Systems

Unit 8 - Comparative Analysis of Digital Identity System Design Choices

Unit 9 - Digital Identity in France

Unit 10 - European Electronic Identification And trust Services Regulation (eIDAS Regulation)

Unit 11 - Identity or Attribute Credentials that Preserve Pseudonymity