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DIGITAL ID

Can you change from NemID to MitID if you no longer live in Denmark?

Next week sees a deadline in the changeover to Denmark’s new digital ID platform, MitID. Many users of the old system, NemID, are required to visit local services in person to verify their identity. What happens if you no longer live in Denmark?

Can you change from NemID to MitID if you no longer live in Denmark?
Switching to MitID may be difficult or impossible for former residents of Denmark. Photo: Liselotte Sabroe/Ritzau Scanpix

People who still have active Danish bank accounts but no longer live in the country are among those who risk being unable to log in to their accounts after November 1st because they cannot attend local services in person to register for the new digital ID, MitID.

Thousands of Danish nationals who live abroad could find themselves in situations of this kind, newspaper Politiken reported earlier in October.

The Local has been contacted by former foreign residents of Denmark who have also described uncertainty over their MitID access because they have left the country and are therefore prevented from going to a local municipal public help desk (borgerservice).

An in-person appointment is required in many cases to confirm a person’s identity as part of the changeover from the outgoing system, NemID.

READ ALSO: How non-Danish passport holders can switch from NemID to MitID

The Danish Agency for Digitisation told Politiken that the issue impacts less than 20,000 people and a solution is on the way for some.

“If you cannot get MitID with NemID or by scanning your passport in the MitID app, you must attend borgerservice [in person] to get MitID, for example, next time you are in Denmark,” MitID states on its website.

People without Danish passports are more likely to need to attend Borgerservice because foreign passports cannot be used to verify ID in the MitID app.

The Danish Agency for Digitisation told Politiken this week that “because a parliamentary election has been called, the Agency for Digitisation cannot in principle comment to the press” apart from to provide factual information.

In comments to the paper earlier this month, the agency did not comment on whether it was reasonable to ask digital ID users to travel thousands of kilometres to register for MitID.

“It is estimated that there are now fewer than 20,000 active NemID users based abroad who have not yet got MitID and who needed to be ID-verified to get MitID,” the agency said.

“A solution is on the way which will make it possible to use foreign passports to set up MitID via the MitID app,” it said.

“If you are unable to get MitID by October 31st, and you need to access your mobile or internet banking after this date, you should contact your bank,” it said.

The Danish Foreign Ministry told Politiken it did not wish to comment on the situation and referred the matter to the Agency for Digitisation.

READ ALSO: MitID: Up to half a million in Denmark could lose access to online banking

The MitID digital ID system is gradually replacing NemID as the online ID used in Denmark for access to public service platforms, online banking and shopping online.

NemID will be turned off for secure platforms including banking on October 31st. After this date, only MitID can be used to log on to these platforms.

While NemID will still be enough to access government services like sundhed.dk, borger.dk and e-Boks, insurance and utility companies will also require MitID from November onwards. 

As such, MitID will be needed to log on to online banking from November 1st.

Those who do not make the switch before the deadline will still be able to do so after it, including in person at municipalities, the Danish Agency for Digitisation has also told Politiken.

Other platforms, like online shopping, will still accept NemID for now. The old system will be fully decommissioned on June 30th, 2023. 

The new MitID has been introduced to improve security and future-proof Denmark’s digital ID system, authorities say.

READ ALSO: Denmark’s MitID secured after discovery of security weakness

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DIGITAL ID

Danish stores and doctors call for digital ID to prevent underage alcohol sales

Stores and doctors in Denmark want politicians to look into the possibility of digital age checks for purchasing alcohol.

Danish stores and doctors call for digital ID to prevent underage alcohol sales

Instead of employees bearing responsibility for guessing a customer’s age based on their appearance and then deciding whether to ask ID, doctors and stores want a digital system to check the purchaser meets the age limit for buying alcohol.

A range of professional organisations and interest groups for doctors and businesses proposed digital IDs as a requirement to buy alcohol in a joint letter published by newspaper Berlingske.

When an alcoholic beverage – for example, a bottle of vodka – is scanned, checkout staff would automatically be alerted to an ID requirement, under the proposal.

If the customer uses their debit card (Dankort) to pay, a digital system would be able to check with the person’s bank whether they are over 18 years old, and reject the purchase of they are not.

The model would not completely prevent underage purchases because it could be circumvented by using cash or another person’s card.

READ ALSO: Denmark advises no alcohol consumption for under-18s

Nevertheless, the deputy chairperson of De Samvirkende Købmænd, the trade union for store owners, Claus Bøgelund Nielsen, argued the measure would make a worthwhile difference.

“Our belief and hope is that it would make a very big difference,” Nielsen told broadcaster TV2.

No other country has adopted a similar measure at the time of writing.

“This is a vision and a wish we have. There’s no country anywhere in the world that does this at the moment but we think it’s ideal to work in this direction,” Nielsen said.

“And if there’s a will all the way the table for this, we think it should be possible within the foreseeable future to achieve it,” he said.

A digital ID check would likely require a law change and thereby a parliamentary majority. Denmark is currently locked in negotiations to form a new government after elections on November 1st.

Banks, stores and payment service providers would need to work together to implement the measure.

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