Estonia n°1 of digital!
This small country in eastern Europe joined the European Union 1 May 2004. It chairs the Council of the European Union since 1 July and this for 6 months. This is an opportunity to take a closer look at this country, notably on its practices in terms of digital.
First, let us note that the Vice-President of the European Commission for Digital Single Market is Andrus ANSIP (Estonian). Moreover, “Digital Economy and Society” portfolio had been temporarily transferred to him from 1 January 2017 to 4 July 2017, date of the appointment of Mariya GABRIEL. So, Estonia is at the heart of the digital sector, and it is not by chance!
Indeed, in 2000，Estonia decided to start digital development. Electronic signature, tax return, administrative formalities, bank, education, vote, up to the digital ID card. It is thanks to this eID and unique password that access to all these services is available. When somebody makes a request for a service, the data provided is transmitted to all existing services. Thus, it is not necessary to provide them at each request.
With such digital development, cybersecurity is an important concern for the Estonian government. Faced with several options and after reflection, the country decided to open a data center in Luxembourg. The agreement was concluded on 20 June. It’s a kind of digital embassy. Thus, the data center will be an Estonian territory, entirely managed by this latter. The country’s functioning is almost totally digital. All the steps are available online. Only marriage, divorce and real estate purchase cannot be done online. Therefore, Estonia needs extensive backup infrastructure for its data. The country has not been spared by cyber-attacks. In 2007 Estonia had undergone a major attack, which pushed him to develop ever greater competence in cyber defense. And an effective protection means had to be put in place. Therefore, the option of the digital embassy in third and friends countries has been retained.
Today Estonia seems to be the benchmark in the digital social world. Thanks to this experience, Estonia wants to drive Europe into more digital. In particular, the country wishes to address the issue of the free flow of data. But this proposal is not appreciated by all. Indeed, there is talk about the security of these data, even more with the recent proliferation of cyber-attacks. Wait and see …