The University Smart Card adapts to the digital era

Over twenty years have passed since Banco Santander issued its first University Smart Card (USC) in 1995 for the University of Cantabria, Spain.

Nowadays, Santander issues 9.1, million USCs in 279 universities over 11 countries. These cards, are not only used to provide university credentials but also allow users to borrow books, access different university locations, provide electronic signatures, access academic records, use the card as an electronic wallet, receive discounts from shops, pay for public transport or use it as a debit card, amongst other options.

In line with the philosophy and objectives of Banco Santander, the University
Smart Card is undergoing a huge technological development to become a state-of-the-art card used in universities. One of the biggest innovations, is the development of the USC app available for Android and iPhone and a pilot development in wearables (smartwatch and bracelet).
Students have changed and also have changed their needs. The penetration of smartphones is growing and growing and it has become the most used device. Therefore, Santander has developed the USC app to allow access to services on and off campus anytime and anywhere with the aim of creating a digital ecosystem that makes student life easier.

BlueDiamond Mobile Credentials

Empowering your phone to open doors

As smartphones and tablets become central to everyday life, Lenel is leveraging new technologies to provide exceptionally secure access control. BlueDiamond™ Mobile delivers a smart alternative to plastic badges, offering greater convenience without compromising security. Since people are rarely without their phones, this solution gives them another access option in addition to their keycards.

Benefits across the board

Unlike many other solutions, BlueDiamond Mobile credentials can be allocated to new phones or people as needed, and can be remotely deactivated. And since smartphones can require a security code or biometric for access as well as possession of the phone, app, and downloaded credential, the solution can provide multi-factor authentication. For an additional layer of protection, BlueDiamond Mobile credentials are automatically deactivated if not periodically refreshed by the cloud server. This helps provide enhanced security by ensuring deactivated credentials are removed from deauthorised devices.


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An Appreciation: Tom Watkins, Emory University

The European Campus Card Association is deeply saddened to learn of the death of our colleague and friend Tom Watkins who died on 22nd December 2016.

Tom was and a great friend of our association. a gentleman of the highest integrity. An outstanding leader who provided unstinting dedication to serving his country for 41 years in the USAF Reserves and also serving the community at Emory University for over 34 years. For almost a decade, Tom attended our annual conference each year. In May 2016 at our last conference in Wroclaw Poland, he delivered an inspiring presentation on the Rollout of Mobile Phone Applications at Emory University.

We all have fond memories of Tom and it was a privilege to know him, his company was enjoyed by all of us over the years. A great servant of the campus card industry, his presence and contribution will be sadly missed by his many colleagues throughout Europe.

On behalf of our association, I extend our deepest sympathy to Tom’s family, his friends and his work colleagues at Emory University.

Sinead Nealon
Secretary General
European Campus Card Association

ECCA Survey 2016 Report

The European Campus Card Association (ECCA) is dedicated to providing a networking platform for its members (both educational and corporate) that facilitates the on-going development of partnerships and the exchange of information between higher education institutions and the campus card industry.

As part of this process, ECCA commissioned a survey in April 2016 to determine the current state-of-the-art and the potential future requirements for eID credentials and campus card systems in Europe and beyond. The findings from the survey, which involved 181 education institutions from 28 countries, reflects the views and opinions of a wide range of educational institutions. These findings will assist ECCA’s research and innovation programme, particularly in the area of establishing common platforms to facilitate the interoperability of campus systems, together with promoting the concept of a common eIDsolution that will achieve interoperability between institutions on a cross-border basis.

Survey Report Summary

ECCA Members can access to the full report from the Resources Section\Documents\Reports (need login)

ECCA Survey 2016

The ECCA 2016 Survey to determine the current state-of-the-art and the potential future requirements for eID credentials and campus card systems has been successful completed. The survey link is now closed. The initial findings of the survey were presented at the ECCA Annual Conference, which was held at Wroclaw University of Science and Technology, Poland from May 22nd to 24th last.

The survey, which involved 181 education institutions from 28 countries, was an initiative from ECCA’s new strategic plan. It reflects the views and opinions of a wide range of educational institutions. The finding will provide a valuable insight into current state of eID credentials, campus card systems and technology, together with identifying the future needs and requirements of systems.

Following an analysis of the information provided by the survey, a detailed report will be compiled and distributed to all the participating educational institutions and the ECCA membership in early September. The initial findings of the survey as presented at the ECCA Annual Conference are available to members on this website.

The next ECCA survey will be commissioned in early 2017.

If you require any information or details on the survey, please mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

About Us

The mission of the association is to assist the institutions of higher education in the Member States of the European Union and other European Countries to implement and operate campus card programmes by facilitating information exchange, by developing European standards where appropriate and by acting as a forum for interaction between the institutions and other agencies with an interest in campus card applications in Higher Education.


For general information about European Campus Card Association, please contact us at:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.