The mobile phone signature (identification and qualified electronic signatures by using the mobile phone) was developed with support of the EU Commission in the large EU pilot project on interoperability of electronic identities called "STORK" . It was activated during the last quarter in 2009. This solution makes it possible to use electronic signatures with a mobile phone. In contrast to existing card-based solutions, installing software and additional hardware (card reader) is no longer necessary.
The solution for secure electronic identification and qualified electronic signatures carried out with the mobile phone functions similar to the solution banks use for e-banking. After successfully logging in with the access code (mobile phone number) and PIN, a TAN code is sent via SMS to the activated mobile phone. When the TAN code is entered in the respective application, a qualified electronic signature is created. This could also be a simple method for creating qualified electronic signatures on a mobile phone. This signature would be, just like in the former card-based solution, the legal equivalent of a handwritten signature, and could be used everywhere, not only for procedures with public administration, but also in business, e.g., in e-banking. The mobile phone signature offers a user-friendly alternative to the well-known card-based eID solutions.
Beside the high security level the mobile phone based eID solution aims to bridge the digital gap by reducing acquisition costs for smartcards or smartcard readers, avoiding technical hurdles like software installations (for middleware/ drivers etc.) and increasing usability due to the use of familiar technology (mobile phone).
All users benefit in several ways from the further development of the Austrian citizen card concept for secure identification and qualified e-sigantures - they will save money and time.
As users do no longer have to install certain software on their PC, they don’t need special computer skills or technical knowledge to use their “mobile phone signature”,
* to place their qualified electronic signature on contracts,
* use it for official applications,
* in the fields of electronic billing,
* E Banking ,
* E-Payment or
* Logon processes.