‘eIDAS’ is an abbreviation of “electronic identification and trust services”. It refers to a range of services that help verify the identity of individuals and businesses online, as well as the authenticity of electronic documents, like waiver forms.
The eIDAS Regulation came into effect on 1 July 2016, replacing the existing eSignatures act with laws standardised across the whole of the EU. The UK has some additional specific provisions on its effect, supervision and enforcement, which are set out in the Electronic Identification and Trust Services for Electronic Transactions Regulations 2016. These in turn have been since modified to reflect changes brought in by the Data Protection Act of 2018.
The purpose of the eIDAS regulation is to provide a common legal framework and consistent rules for recognising electronic IDs and signatures, and thus to enhance the trust in such electronic document transactions. For example, under eIDAS regulation an electronic signature shall not be denied legal effect and admissibility as evidence in legal proceedings solely based on the fact that it is in electronic form.