It was one of the great technological novelties announced by the government for 2023. The Digital National Identity Card (CNI), available on smartphones, was supposed to arrive nationwide in the first quarter of 2023, via the French Identity app. However, it appears that the project has finally been delayed. explanations.
Since May 2022, a committee of 1,000 and then 5,000 volunteers has been selected to test the identity of France. A mobile application that aims to centralize access to various government websites in a single identity, and above all to make the national identity card available in a digital version on smartphones.
For several years now, the European Commission has been strongly encouraging its 27 Member States to develop a digital CNI. The French government, through its Ministry of Digital, initially planned a relatively quick rollout, on a national scale, in order to make the ID card available on smartphones for all French people who wish to take advantage of it. In an interview given to ParisianIn particular, the director of ANTS (Agence Nationale des Titres Sécurisés), Anne-Gaëlle Baudoin-Clerc, made clear the government’s desire to retain its sovereign function, in other words to make it available only via the French application. As you understand, digital CNI will not be available in applications wallet Android and Apple smartphones.
Many bugs are found on iPhones
Publication of the digital ID has been hampered by several bugs on apple brand smartphones. Of the 5,000 test volunteers, half of the users had the latest Apple models. The main problem may come from the iPhone’s NFC reader, which allows a contactless object to interact, such as a digital bank card and electronic payment terminal. Incompatibility errors have already been found between Apple’s NFC and the chip containing the new ID card formats. Big problem, because the NFC reader has to be able to read the chip that requests the PACE so it can import all the identity data needed to digitize the CNI.
While all Apple models may be affected by these errors, iPhone 12, iPhone 13, and iPhone 14 seem to have had the most problems with chip reading. A bug that needs to be resolved soon, otherwise it will be impossible for iPhone users to check CNI on their smartphones. Apple developers are currently working on an effective and permanent solution to this major problem. A few months ago, the France Identity Twitter account claimed that this had been resolved thanks to the new version of iOS 16. However, if Apple’s operating system now allows reading the CNI chip, the bugs seem to persist, and it is likely that the testers have To repeat reading attempts several times.
A second phase of testing is coming
As I understand it, as long as these bugs persist on iPhones, the France Identity app and CNI digitization cannot be developed on a national scale. For testers using Android smartphones, the other half of the volunteer group, they didn’t seem to notice any particular bugs.
Having your ID card on a smartphone raises logical questions about comprehensive data protection. Before a large-scale launch of digital CNI in France and EU countries, the level of security and protection must be optimal, hence the impossibility of direct access to our ID card. wallet. The France Identity application will also be available to the general public only after validation and approval by the National Agency for the Security of Information Systems (ANSSI).
The government is also planning a second phase of testing, this time mobilizing 20,000 volunteer users, using Android and Apple smartphones. So it will be necessary to be patient before getting your ID card on your smartphone.
sources: Le Parisien, Lemon Press, West France