To a large extent, proofs and confirmations of official documents still have to be provided physically today. Since the introduction of the digital Covid certificate, Swiss citizens have gained initial experience with a simple digital certificate on their smartphone. The future digital certificates should be integrated seamlessly into digital business processes and thus increase efficiency, simplify processing, and enable new business models.

Orell Füssli and Swisscom are partnering up to offer citizens, companies and public authorities trustworthy, forgery-proof and intelligent digital certificates in the future. Users will be able to retrieve these in real time via their smartphones and integrate them into business processes in a verifiable manner. The two companies also plan to link digital certificates with functionalities to enable new interactions and processes for citizens, companies and authorities. The first applications are to be offered within the next 12 months.

Access and use of digital certificates can enable new and more efficient user interactions. These include, for example:

  • Age verification when purchasing age-restricted products or passing entry checks
  • Digitally verifiable application dossiers
  • Combination with legally valid digital signatures as digital expression of will

The solutions jointly developed by Orell Füssli and Swisscom will be based on the principles of privacy by design, data economy and decentralised data storage, and thus follow the Federal Council's eID directional decision of 17.12.2021, according to which users should have the greatest possible control over their data (SSI).

The partnership between the two companies combines the leading expertise of Orell Füssli as a systems provider for security technologies and identification systems, and that of Swisscom as Switzerland's leading telecommunications and IT company. Orell Füssli will contribute its decades of expertise in security solutions for the state and citizens, such as banknote printing and the production of identity documents. In addition, through its subsidiary Procivis, Orell Füssli offers leading and pioneering technologies in the field of smartphone-based identity solutions for government services, which ensure decentralized data storage. Swisscom provides private customers and companies with digital services ranging from entertainment to comprehensive overall IT solutions for banks. In addition, Swisscom is one of the leading providers of trust services such as legally binding digital signatures and blockchain-based electronic seals, which are also used across national borders in the EU. Furthermore, Swisscom wants to expand its activities in the area of Self Sovereign Identity (SSI) - both in network access and in network operations (so-called nodes).

Daniel Link, CEO Orell Füssli Group: "We are delighted to be working with a strong partner like Swisscom to drive forward the issue of digital certificates in Switzerland. Digital certificates are an important topic for the future and hold great potential for increasing efficiency and saving costs. Together with Swisscom, we want to develop a system that simplifies interaction between people and organizations. At the same time, users should be at the center and retain control over their information and how it is used."

Urs Schaeppi, CEO Swisscom: "Today, we can work flexibly from home, watch our favorite show anywhere and anytime, pay simply with our smartphone - every day we experience how digital services simplify our lives. Digital certificates, whether for age checks, job applications or even the conclusion of a contract, is the next simplification step, for individuals as well as for companies and public authorities. We are very much looking forward to working with Orell Füssli to develop a solution that makes digital certificates possible and easy to use."

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