The ECB has published its report which provides consolidated insights on the five prototypes of a potential digital euro. This tests how digital euro design choices could be implemented, technically, and integrated into the existing European payments landscape.

Worldline delivered the person-to-person (P2P) fully offline payment use-case. This allows individuals to make payments using the digital euro, even when no party involved has network access.

The prototype’s success confirms the technological feasibility and industrial scaling potential of the offline scenario, contributing to a more resilient payment system. However, the prototypes will be discarded for the next phases of the project. This will ensure a level playing field for the entire industry.

Security is in Worldine’s DNA

With security playing an important role in offline transactions, Worldline developed a highly secure solution. The firm said this is based on a hardware tamper-proof secure element, embedded in a mobile phone.
The end-to-end solution ensures the highest level of security across the whole chain of institutions and actors. It leverages cryptographic signatures, to manage their specific critical financial operations linked to offline digital money.

This includes:

  • A central bank component to manage offline money supply;
  • A trusted intermediaries gateway to integrate with ECB’s back-end infrastructure and manage customers wallet portfolio, enabling funding and defunding operations but also KYC/AML/CFT compliance to regulations amongst others, and
  • A mobile wallet app for users who may execute consecutive offline payments to peers in an easy, secure and convenient manner through a proximity NFC communication channel.

Beyond the technological security stack, a regular online reconciliation of offline wallets data is enforced to allow an effective mitigation of inherent risks and detect anomalies.

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Finally, the prototype has been designed for a smooth integration with offline solutions based on different technologies, to maximise market compatibility and adoption rate in an heterogenous offline wallet landscape.

Ready for the payment industry evolution

Worldline is well-positioned and is engaging in the upcoming evolution of central bank money and European payments.

Marc-Henri Desportes, Deputy Chief Executive Officer at Worldline said: “Worldline, as a European player and mastering the entire end-to-end payment value chain is very proud of the successful delivery of a person-to-person offline digital euro front-end prototype.
“The ability of paying without an Internet connection could contribute to the resilience and user convenience of a potential digital cash equivalent”.