Indian Govt to Introduce New Measures For Increased Aadhaar Security

Indian Govt to Introduce New Measures For Increased Aadhaar Security

"Aadhaar holder can use the Virtual ID in lieu of Aadhaar number whenever authentication or KYC services are performed". Since the system generated Virtual ID will be mapped to an individual's Aadhaar number itself at the back end, it will do away with the need for the user to share Aadhaar number for authentication.

The Unique Identity Authority of India (UIDAI) has extended the temporary permission it gave to Bharti Airtel for using biometric identity for re-verification of its mobile customers, till March 31.

But the announcement of the virtual Aadhaar ID sure hints that something was broken earlier that UIDAI is now trying to fix. Only those with a valid Aadhaar number can generate their VID and revoke it after the UIDAI stipulates the minimum validity period. For any given Aadhaar number there will only be one active VID at any given time.

Officials said a user can generate as many Virtual IDs as he or she wants.

The UIDAI - the authority which runs the government's Aadhaar program - stated that the initiative is aimed at minimising instances of leak and misuse of Aadhaar numbers that will be also going to enhance the privacy of the 119 crore people afterward the identification number will be issued.

The Delhi police filed an "open-ended FIR" following a complaint by the Unique Identification Authority of India against The Tribune newspaper and its reporter.

Now, while Nilekani himself has asserted that virtual IDs would be fool-proof, tech experts and Aadhaar critics say it's not going to be so. This is an effort to curb the number of people who will have access to the Aadhaar number.

"UIDAI will provide various options to Aadhaar number holders to generate their VID, retrieve their VID in case they forget, and replace their VID with a new number". The reprieve was given keeping in mind the convenience of customers and also the impending March 31 deadline given by the Supreme Court for mobile SIM re- verification.

What is Virtual ID (VID) and how is it different from your 12-digit Aadhaar number?

All agencies using Aadhaar Authentication and e-KYC services will be required to ensure that Aadhaar number holders can provide the 16-digit VID instead of Aadhaar number within their application. New security layer is like locking the stable after horses have bolted.

Global AUAs should make changes in their systems to accept UID token, in addition to Aadhaar number and use it in their processes.

UIDAI has been under the scanner over the past few months over allegations of access of personal information by random entities without the consent of individual Aadhaar holders. The hurry with which it was turned into a national ID system for over a billion Indians is now evident, with a new issue staring at UIDAI's face every day.

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