Amazon under fire for requesting Aadhaar numbers

Amazon customers in India attempting to track lost packages are being asked to provide their Aadhaar numbers as proof of identity by the company’s customer care representatives, which critics contend could lead to privacy issues, the Economic Times reports. Aadhaar numbers are meant and used for access to government programs and regulated services, such as telecom and financial services, but their use by private companies is contentious, and the degree of secrecy that individuals should treat Aadhaar numbers with is

Online publication of Aadhaar info not a security breach, UIDAI says

Media reports suggesting sensitive Aadhaar data has been breached are an inaccurate representation of fact, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) said in a statement issued Monday by India’s Ministry of Electronics and IT. Numerous media outlets reported last week that approximately 210 government websites had published personal information related to Aadhaar registrants, following a proactive disclosure by UIDAI under the RTI (Right to Information) Act. While the details were published, UIDAI says the data is public information, and

UIDAI proposes payments regulator to prevent conflict of interest

The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the the governing body for Aadhaar, is calling for a “payments system regulator” to prevent conflict of interest and ensure data security by monitoring digital payments, according to a report by International Business Times. According to the agency, the payments system regulator will scale up Aadhaar-based transactions by encouraging interoperability and dissuading unauthorized uses of biometric data. “In UIDAI’s opinion, there is a need for a payments system regulator/observer who can engage with

Petition says linking Aadhaar with bank accounts violates right to privacy

A new petition has been filed against Aadhaar in India’s Supreme Court, challenging Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) decision to link the 12-digit biometric identity number to bank accounts on grounds that it violates the right to privacy, according to a report by Inc42. The petition, filed by Kalyani Menon Sen, comes a day after RBI announced that linking of bank accounts with Aadhaar is now mandatory under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. “The government has

UIDAI chairman says Aadhaar helped government save $9B

Nandan Nilekani, the first chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), said that the Aadhaar Card system helped save India $9 billion by curbing cases of misuse of beneficiary welfare schemes, according to a report by Little India. “By having a unique number, you eliminate fakes and duplicates from your beneficiary and employee lists. That alone has saved the government $9 billion,” Nilekani said at a World Bank panel discussion on “Digital Economy for Development” in Washington. “It

Bengaluru’s KIA will be first fully Aadhaar-enabled airport in India

Bengaluru’s Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) is set to become the first Aadhaar-enabled airport in India by 2018, according to a report by The Economic Times. Following a two-month pilot project in February, Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) has given the greenlight to make KIA fully compliant with Aadhaaar-enabled entry and biometric boarding system. KIA is expected to be completely Aadhar enabled by December 2018, which is a part of the airport’s initiative to become a Smart Airport. Passengers will be

Report claims UIDAI executives part of private firms profiting from Aadhaar

Current and past employees of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the governing body for Aadhaar, are launching private firms or funding start-ups that are selling Aadhaar-based services and products. According to a report by The Indian Express, the practice is raising concerns regarding propriety and conflict of interest. For instance, former UIDAI chief product managers Vivek Raghavan (who is on a sabbatical with a tenure until the end of February 2018) and Sanjay Jain, as well as former

India may deactivate SIM cards not linked to Aadhaar

The Indian government has made it mandatory for citizens to connect their SIM card with Aadhar card before February 2018 in order to prevent the deactivation of their phone number, according to a report by Financial Express. The move comes a week after the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) gave banks until the end of the month to open Aadhaar enrollment centers in 10 percent of branches and will fine Rs 20,000 (US$312) for every uncovered branch after September

UIDAI declines privacy activist request for Aadhaar data protection information

The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the authority for Aadhaar, have declined Indian privacy activist Vivek Velankar’s request to reveal the names of companies responsible for storing sensitive data as well as the manufacturers of the servers over ‘security reasons’, according to a report by The Times of India. To address data privacy concerns regarding the compulsory Aadhaar registration, Velankar had filed an RTI application asking for the names of the companies storing Aadhaar data, name of the country

UIDAI to soon fine banks without Aadhaar enrollment centers

The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has given banks until the end of the month to open Aadhaar enrollment centers in 10 percent of branches and will fine Rs 20,000 (US$312) for every uncovered branch after September 30, according to a report by Hindustan Times. The UIDAI, the governing agency in charge of Aadhaar, ordered private and public banks in July to open Aadhaar enrolment and updation facility in one out of 10 branches by the end of August.