News February 23rd, 2018

by Nortal

Nortal employee awarded state decoration for Estonian ID-card fix

Nortal System Architect Kaarel Raspel has received a high state honor – the Order of the White Cross, 5th Class – for his role in preventing a security crisis linked to the Estonian ID-card.

Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid bestowed this year’s state decorations on Raspel and others in a ceremony held in the run-up to the country’s February 24 centennial.

As outlined in a statement issued by the Office of the President, Raspel made a “significant personal contribution” to preventing the Estonian ID-card security risk from materializing. “He played a leading role in developing the principal solution,” the statement said.

Nortal’s Kaarel Raspel made a significant contribution to preventing the Estonian ID-card security risk from materializing.

Raspel was part of a team of specialists called in last year after an international group of researchers discovered a security flaw in the chips used in all ID cards issued in Estonia beginning in October 2014. Around 800,000 cards were affected in the country of 1.3 million. The risk, though theoretical, prompted serious concerns as the ID cards are widely used to access Estonia’s online infrastructure.

Crisis averted

“There were many people working on the same goal,” Raspel said. “I reconstructed the pillars of the Estonian eID ecosystem, the eID application on the smart card, and proposed a way to make file encryption work with elliptic-curve cryptography,” he added.

After the security fix was put in place, affected users could once again use their ID cards for online transactions by updating their security certificates.

Upon hearing the news that he was to receive the decoration, Raspel said he was genuinely surprised and humbled by such high recognition on the state level. “It has been an honor being a part of the team developing the technical solution for the ID-card,” he said.

Introduced in 1936, the Order of the White Star is bestowed on Estonian citizens in recognition of services rendered in state public service or local government, and on foreigners for services rendered to the Estonian state.

Related content

Event

Visit us at "digital Davos" in Saudi Arabia
  • Cyber Resilience
  • Data and AI
  • Technology and Engineering

Join us at the "digital Davos" in Saudi Arabia

We’re excited to share that we will be taking part in LEAP 2024 from 4 to 7 March. The “digital Davos,” as coined by the Wired magazine, is the leading tech event in Saudi Arabia.

Event

Pointing on the computer screen
  • Experience and Design
  • Strategy and Transformation

Webinar: Building products your customers want and the business needs

Join us on Thursday, March 21, to learn about ways an outcome-driven and experience-led approach can help your product team deliver quicker customer and business value.

Event

webinar
  • Citizen-Centric Personalized Digital Government

Webinar: A new post-digital era of Personal Government is on the rise

As the world becomes more complex, governments are forced to rethink how they offer public services in the future. Join the discussion with industry experts Andres Raieste (SVP of Public Sector), Mihkel Solvak (Assoc. Prof. at the University of Tartu), and Ville Sirviö (CEO of the Nordic Institude of Interoperabilty Solutions), as we dive deep into the future of public services, interoperability, and trust in digital services.

Get in touch

Let us offer you a new perspective.