Estonia: What is e-Residency?

“E-residency is a state-issued secure digital identity for non-residents that allows digital authentication and the digital signing of documents.
E-residency is provided by the government of the Republic of Estonia, but does not bring physical residency or rights of entry to Estonia or EU. E-residency does not entail any residential or citizen rights and cannot be used as a physical identification card or travel document.
The purpose of e-residency is to make life easier by using secure e-services that have been accessible to Estonians for years already. By providing e-residency, we are moving towards the idea of a country without borders.
E-residents receive a smart ID-card with a microchip (contact chip) that contains two certificates:
• Certificate for authentication
• Certificate for digital signatures
Digital authentication allows you to access different e-services (provided both by the public and private sector), and to log in to any online portals that recognize this type of authentication (such as internet banks, government portals etc). Digital authenticating requires you to enter a 4-digit PIN code, similar to your bank card.
Digital signing allows you to securely sign any type of documents from anywhere you are in the world, provided there is Internet access, with your 5-12 digit PIN code. Within EU, digital signatures are legally binding in all member states. Outside EU, digital signatures are legally binding in the case of mutual agreement between the parties….
General information about e-residency can be found here on a downloadable PDF