Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

European Trusted Services (Phase II) - Preparatory work

The European Commission, DG XIII, has published an open call for tenders for preparatory action in the field of European Trusted Services (Phase II) (ETS-II).

The Commission is, as part of its work on the Security of Information Systems, inviting tenders for investigations covered by the tasks defined in "Part I: Workplan" of this call. This work is in preparation for the next phase of action in the area of European Trusted Services (ETS). The workplan covers the design, specification and market-driven implementation of a European Trusted Third Party Service (TTPS) infrastructure in the form of specific lots and tasks for investigation.

The social and financial benefits of the Information Society will be achieved through the wider penetration and use of the new information services, particularly in the growing area of Electronic Commerce. These services will be based on multimedia technology and they will provide the mobile user with the facilities needed for a broad range of information and telematic applications. Adequate information security and, in particular, the use of public key cryptography is widely considered to be one of the main enablers of these developments.

The work addressed in this call for tenders should concentrate on a Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) architectural framework supporting digital signature and other cryptographic services.

The following specific lots for work have been identified. Under each lot, specific tasks have been defined for further investigation and these tasks constitute the subject of this Call for Tenders. More detailed description of the tasks can be found in Part I of the Terms of Reference.

- Lot 1: PKI Architecture: the development of a PKI architectural specification is the first step in examining the feasibility of the various implementation options:
. Task 1: The PKI Architecture;

- Lot 2: Trust: the study and development of a framework for the quality assurance of security services:
. Task 1: Promoting trust and user confidence through service evaluations;
. Task 2: Promoting trust and user confidence through legal measures;

- Lot 3: Cost: the development of a cost model for ETS is required which will provide relative and, where possible, true costs, including the major factors influencing different implementations:
. Task 1: Financial modelling of ETS - important cost factors;

- Lot 4: Market creation: an analysis of TTP service provision from the perspective of the service provider including motivation, licensing options, technical, legal and operational obstacles, particularly in the provision of cross-border services:
. Task 1: Removing the barriers for service provision and commercial offerings;

- Lot 5: Time Stamping Service (TSS): the time stamping service supports almost all the cryptographic services offered by a TTP. It has particular quality requirements and poses specific engineering and operational problems, especially in a multi-domain environment:
. Task 1: The delivery of a time stamping service for ETS;

- Lot 6: World Wide Web: due to the extensive use of the WWW for information access, electronic commercial transactions, and the continuous evolution of tools and languages, the arising security issues and new problems need to be considered carefully:
. Task 1: Security in the WWW, assessment of new technologies - the ETS connection.

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