[Linux-bruxelles] smart cards (eg eID) and GNU/linux

Nicolas Pettiaux nicolas.pettiaux at gmail.com
Mer 2 Fév 09:06:04 CET 2005

Dear Danny,

I have really appreciated your wiki
(http://www.esat.kuleuven.ac.be/~decockd/wiki/bin/view.cgi/Main/DannyDeCock) that contains much information about the eID smart cards and also Debian GNU/linux (that I happen to use and promote, as I have done for years)

You have probably noted, as I have, that the recent visit of Bill Gates
in Belgium has spurred much information about the support Microsoft
would give to the Belgian eID for example in the "enhanced security"
this would provide for online chatting, but also for other applications.

I think that these are words that the press like, as do some
politicians, and maybe some of the public (that supposedly the browsing
will be made safer for the children).

Many questions arise, that the Free Software community must address, but
one definitively will be : which are the applciations that are available
on other systems than the usual new Microsoft ones ?

There is, to my concern, the first field we should altogether invest
some efforts.

I would therefore like to ask you some questions:

I run Debian Ubuntu on my x86 portable, with a recent java JRE
installed, and I will take such a system as "the platform".

Which hardware can I buy to read and process the smartd cards available
in Belgium made by which vendors ? (Belgian official eID and SIS cards,
private banking cards like VISA, Proton and MC/bancontact ...)

How to compare the readers and Which reader would you recommend ?

Which are the smart cards that can be accessed on GNU/linux using which
software platform ? (javan python ... ?)

Will the functions : recharge of a proton card, reading of the Belgian
eID, SIS card by Medical doctors, ... be "easily" available on the
GNU/linux platform ? If not, what would need to be done to make them
accessible ? (if the SIS card would be readable using GNU/linux, we
could think to propose to use these systems to the

We could put the answers to all these question in you wiki and that
could help start a discussion and maybe thereaftr organize a meeting of
interested developpers.

Much thanks in advance,

Nicolas Pettiaux - Association for electronic liberty - AEL -

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