Digitization of Cards: How e-wallet Could Make Your Life Easier

Many of us know the situation when we carry around an overfilled wallet with many cards, which are needed when proving our identity, age, gym membership or library access. However, even that might not be enough when we visit a bureau – you should have the proof of being a student, a secondary education certificate and many similar things printed out on paper and physically with you. The revolution in this area might come with technology under the name Self-Sovereign Identity (SSI), which could enable digitalizing your student card and even your university diploma. To find out if such technology makes sense in the academic environment, we are looking for respondents for our survey.

1 Mar 2023

The concept of SSI is the next step in digitalization and the reduction of bureaucracy. It is strongly supported by the European Union, especially with the goal of establishing a Europe-wide digital wallet. This activity could result in replacing national ID cards, driving licences, diplomas, different certificates, health insurance cards, membership cards and many others with digital equivalents stored in the digital wallet on your mobile phone. We can be proud of our country being one of the most active in this field. At Masaryk University, we want to keep up with the trends as much as possible. Therefore, we are exploring the ability to use this technology in a purely academic environment.

Known Concept, Just in a Digital Form

How does SSI work? Instead of letting the information be held by a third party, as it is usually done nowadays (for instance, Google having information about you through your account), you are now becoming the ultimate owner of your data.

Firstly, you need to install an application into your smartphone, which acts as your digital wallet. After that, you are able to collect cards (credentials) from different bureaus and institutions (digital) with information like your name, picture, identification number, or digital diploma confirming your achieved university education. This information is stored in your digital wallet. Whenever you need it, you can easily share it from the application. For instance, you can confirm being a student or university employee with a single click. The complete process is simple, fast, secured, and in short terms, the ultimate method for proving identity and information.

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Can We Use SSI in the Academic Environment? Share Your Opinion With Us and Join Our Test Case

Do you like the concept of having a wallet in digital form? Can you imagine a situation how it could be applied at the university? We are in the process of mapping places where we could use SSI in the academic environment. And that is the place where you can help us! Fill out the questionnaire to help us understand how you interact with your academic identity. And you can help us even more by registering into a user-focused testing in which we will go through some demo use-cases.

Your motivation might not be just a good feeling – we have a small gift prepared for everybody as a compensation for your time spent with us.

FAQ About SSI Technology

What About the Privacy and Security of My Data?

SSI as technology brings a revolutionary approach to user privacy protection and keeping personal data secure and safe. The identity verifier, e.g. a train steward, receives and sees only the information you choose and share. All the communication happens via a protected channel established between you (your wallet) and the other participant, so you do not need to worry about a malicious third party getting to this data. The concept of SSI is designed so that the original issuer of the data (for example, a university) does not know that you, as the owner, are providing your data to someone else, which ensures complete privacy.​

And as another benefit, you save a lot of time when visiting each of the bureaus separately. SSI is a safe and secure solution which protects your privacy and gives you the ultimate control over your data. Let’s see it in an example.

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What Would Happen if I Lost my Mobile Phone?

The whole digital wallet is backed up. And in the worst case, you can request all of the cards to be issued again, online, without the need to go anywhere.

What Would the Process of Getting a Card Look Like?

In general, it would be really similar to the real world process when somebody hands you a plastic card, you grab it and put it into the wallet. Similarly you would open your digital wallet, scan a QR code to create the protected communication channel. After completing that step, you would receive a notification in the digital wallet with a text like “Ministry of internal affairs is offering you a card with XYZ – do you want to accept and store it?” After accepting it, the card would get stored in the wallet, and you could start using it.

What Would a Typical Use Case Look Like?

You are accepted to enrol on your dreamed studies at MUNI. First things first, you need your MUNI student card. You can request its issuing via the University information system (IS) without the need to go to your study matters office. Instead of getting a plastic card, you receive a digital card, which will appear in the application on your smartphone – the digital wallet. And when the time comes, instead of pulling out the plastic card, you will reach for your smartphone and share the card with the requesting party.

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