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Digital Covid Certificates, Source: Ministry of Health of Bulgaria

EU Digital COVID Certificate verification system launches today

EU Digital COVID Certificate verification system launches today

All Member States should start using it by 1 July

The European Commission informed today that it has reached a key milestone in the implementation of the Digital COVID certificate. The technical system for certificate verification at the European Union level was put into operation on 1 June. This allows for secure verification of the health status document, without compromising travellers’ data.

This does not yet mean that the EU Digital COVID Certificate is fully operational, however – some countries, which are technically ready, can already start using the system and convert their national certificates into the new format, while the entire EU should be ready with the process by 1 July, when the European regulation comes into force.

Towards safe travel across the EU

As we reported earlier, the EU DIGITAL COVID certificate (formerly referred to as Digital Green Certificate) was proposed by the EU executive with a view to allowing safe travel in the summer. The document, available in digital and/or paper format, will serve as proof that a person has been either vaccinated against COVID-19, tested negative prior to departure or has recently recovered from the illness (a different variation of the certificate will be available for each case).

The certificate is issued on the national level by a hospital, a test centre, a health authority, with each authority having its own digital signature key. These keys are stored in a secure database in each country. Now, the European Commission has built a common gateway through which all certificate signatures can be verified across the EU.

The certificate operates with a Quick Response (QR code) and is offered in a national language and in English. The newly-launched portal allows authorities in other countries to check the features contained in the QR codes of all certificates, i.e. their authenticity. This completes the preparatory work at EU level.

The Commission also reported that until today, 22 countries have successfully tested the portal. Although the regulation will apply from 1 July, all Member States that have already completed the technical tests and are ready to issue and verify certificates can start using the system on a voluntary basis.

As of today, seven Member States - Bulgaria, Czechia, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Croatia and Poland - have started issuing the first EU certificates. Some countries are waiting for all functions to be available at the national level before launching the EU DIGITAL COVID certificate (see where the EU Digital Certificate is available on the map in the Gallery above).

Up-to-date information on the progress of the work on the implementation of the EU Digital Covid Certificate is available here.

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