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Digital Denmark

Europe’s digital communication leader!

Photographs: iStock

Text: Mariano Anthony Davies

Everyone in Denmark over 18 (unless dispensation has been given) has an official digital communication identity with both the Private and Public Sector. This digital portal is called e-Boks, which is a service provided by a Danish company of that name founded in 2001 and co-owned by Nets and Postnord.

The purpose of e-Boks is to increase the efficiency of mail distribution between companies and private mail recipients as well as the Public Sector and adult citizens registered in Denmark. To date, e-Boks is recognised as one of Denmark’s most secure digital brands.

Other countries are following suit with similar solutions. Ireland, for example, has drawn on the positive experience from Denmark and has now chosen e-Boks to be responsible for its public digital post solution and is currently implementing an ambitious strategy for Public Sector digitalisation with the introduction of digital post as an essential part of this strategy. The Danish firm e-Boks was chosen as the supplier who would have the future responsibility for the development of digital post between Public Authorities and private citizens.

The e-Boks technology market penetration has increased dramatically since first introduced. It offers companies, Public Authorities and private citizens an effective, secure and very user-friendly platform for digital communication with easy access for digital signatures, payments, dispatch and storage of essential documents.

The security of this type of digital technology is assisted by all citizens in Denmark from birth (including those who come to live and work in Denmark) immediately receiving A CPR number (a personal identification number). This number facilitates accurate linkage between all Danish national registers. A CPR number consists of ten digits. The first six digits represent a person’s date of birth, and the last four are a unique identification number – men with odd numbers and women with even numbers.

"The purpose of e-Boks is to increase the efficiency of mail distribution between companies and private mail recipients as well as the Public Sector and adult citizens registered in Denmark."

To qualify for a civil registration number (CPR number) when you move to Denmark, you must meet several requirements and the municipality where you choose to live is responsible for assigning a CPR number.

The rules on registration relating to immigration from abroad in the CPR can be found in the Civil Registration System Act. To be registered in the CPR as a resident of Denmark, you must have a place to live or stay (a dwelling) and your stay in Denmark must last longer than three months. In addition, non-Nordic nationals must have a residence permit/registration certificate from the Immigration Authorities.

It is not possible to be registered in the CPR as a resident of Denmark before you have moved to Denmark. This means you cannot be assigned a CPR number before you arrive in Denmark, even if you need a CPR number to open a bank account, apply for an official educational grant, or to enrol children either in school or day-care.

If you have received your residence permit before you enter Denmark, you can be registered in the CPR as a resident of Denmark from the date of your entry if you also have a place to live.

When introduced in 2001, e-Boks hoped to reach 350.000 constant Users in Denmark assisted by the Nets and PostNord co-ownership. By 2003, it was already installed by 250.000 Users, and this number rose to 2 million in 2009. Aggressive advertising at national sports events increased this number to 3 million in 2011 and 4 million in 2013 with similar systems established by e-Boks in Sweden and Norway.

Denmark is the most digital country in Europe. In Denmark, it is now mandatory to communicate with the Public Sector through a service called ‘Digital Post’. This means that all interaction between citizens and the public is done electronically by using secure email instead of sending letters. Digital Post is also available for the Private Sector to use and is used by many large service-based companies such as insurance companies, financial institutions and schools. Denmark has a high degree of Internet penetration. Approximately 94% of the population have Internet at home, 89% use the Internet daily, and over 12 months, 88% of citizens interact digitally with the Public Authorities at least once.

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