Use of the Citizen Certificate

The Population Register Centre’s Citizen Certificate is stored on an identity card issued by the police to help identify someone reliably when they are using electronic services. For the Certificate to be used for e-services it first has to be activated. Use of the identity card as a travel document or as proof of identity does not require activation of the Citizen Certificate.

Activation means that the Certificate can start to be used and that the user has created PIN/access codes. These instructions apply to ID cards issued after 1 January 2017.

To activate the certificate on the card you need

  • an activation PIN
  • a computer
  • a card reader
  • card reader software.

The activation PIN will arrive in the post within two weeks of the date on which card is ready.

You can buy a card reader from a well-stocked computer accessory store or online. Card readers are often sold with the name personal card reader or chip card reader. You can check with the retailer if it is compatible with your ID card. Some computers come with a card reader built in.

If your computer still does not have card reader software, install it before activation. You can download the software from the card reader software web page. The software needs to be mPollux DigiSign client version 4.0.12 or later. The card reader software is included in the price of the certificate card.

Instructions for activating the certificate

To activate the card a basic PIN needs to be installed on it together with a signature PIN. You can decide the codes yourself. Think about the digits you want to use beforehand, as you only have 30 seconds to enter each number during activation.

1. Place the card in the card reader
The card reader software will start the activation process automatically when you place the card in the reader the first time.

2. Activate the basic PIN (PIN1)
Enter the activation code in the letter and enter the basic PIN you have decided to use twice (PIN1). The basic pin can be between four and eight digits long. Then press the OK button.

3. Activate the signature PIN (PIN2)
Enter the activation code in the letter and enter the signature PIN you have decided to use twice (PIN2). The signature pin for the Citizen Certificate can be between six and eight digits long.

4. Activation is complete.

Following activation you can also use the card with older card reader software versions and the card reader software of other manufacturers.

Use of the PINs

PIN1 is the basic PIN, with which the card user can access services.

PIN2 is the signature PIN, with which the user can create an electronic signature.
If you keep a record of your PIN numbers on a piece of paper, keep them separate from the certificate card.