3 questions about its arrival on your phones

The government will launch a trial version of the application in late May. “France identity”, which allows you to prove your identity online, like a bank card available on a phone.

Approved by a decree published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 27 April, this “digital identity guarantee service” takes over from Alicem, a project abandoned after a negative statement from Cnil on the use of face recognition.

The goal is to facilitate online administrative procedures, such as with FranceConnect. Today you need to enter your social security number or tax code to access this service.

The application must also make it possible to provide proof of identity “to put an end to ID card scans, but also to justify its majority without revealing its identity or giving a power of attorney with a single click”, indicates the government website.

1 – Who is entitled to it?

The launch of the “France Sécurité” application is scheduled for end of May 2022. Improved versions will be available later.

To access this new service, you must be the holder of a new identity card, the distribution of which has begun in August 2021. If you received your ID card after this date, you are eligible. Like biometric passports and residence permits, this card has one “chip” containing your identity data, in particular your marital status data, a photograph and two fingerprints, for which it will be possible to request the removal of national treatment if the cardholder so requests. There will also be cardholder’s surnames and forenames, date and place of birth, sex and date of issue.

2 – How to use it?

To use the application, you must therefore be in possession of the new identity card. Like bank cards, it will be given to the user a confidential code which will allow him to express his consent when using his data. You will then need to download the “France Identity” application and create your digital identity.

The use of the digital identity card will not be not obligatory. In fact, “the physical steps at the counter to access services will always be possible,” the government stressed. Note that FranceConnect services will continue to offer, as at present, other ways of online identification, such as your Impots.gouv.fr, Ameli.fr, MobileConnect and me, MSA or IN La Poste identifiers.

It will also be possible revoke the digital identity service at any time. However, the government has not yet specified what the steps will be.

3 – Is it safe?

Having your personal data on a digital server can be worrying, whether it is due to hacks or sharing of this data.

First of all, the France Identity website specifies that transactions made through the application will be can only be tracked by the user. They will be available on the application thanks to the confidential code that only the user knows, as for a bank card. He will have the opportunity to see his history over the last three months or the last five uses.

The government also reminds that the chip contained in the new identity card “does not allow any geolocation.” It also explains that personal data may not be placed on the market “in accordance with the provisions of Article 32 of Law No 78-17 of 6 January 1978 concerning data processing, files and liberties”, following the opinion of the CNIL (National Commission for Computing and Liberties).

If a phone on which the application is installed is stolen, there is none no risk as long as the theft is declared, in the same way that theft of a traditional identity document must be reported. Because the data is encrypted and protected by a secret code, it is difficult for a thief to access the information in the application, in the same way as those stored in a bank account application.

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