Public-private surveillance project in India raises privacy concerns

A surveillance project in Mumbai that would see private and public establishments share their CCTV feed with the police is raising privacy concerns over allowing police access to private networks, according to a report by DNA India. The surveillance project consists of a network of 4,717 cameras, installed at 1,510 sensitive locations. In an effort to improve surveillance, enable faster response and enhance protection, the government wants live access to the video feeds of malls, five-star hotels, shops, banks and

Indian public concerned about fingerprint payment scheme

The Guardian is reporting that a prominent think tank has found that the prospect of using fingerprint authentication for everyday payments is raising privacy concerns among the Indian public. The Centre for Internet and Society says that many Indians are concerned about the “privacy implications” of using Aadhaar as a payment scheme. Aadhaar is the 12-digit unique identification number issued by the Indian government to every individual resident of India. The Aadhaar project aims to provide a single, unique identifier

Maharashtra to deploy multi-biometric criminal ID solution, Aadhaar POS machines

The Maharashtra, India government is expected to choose a technology vendor this month to equip fingerprint, iris and face scanners to police stations throughout the state to record biometric data of criminals, according to a report by The Indian Express. The state government posted a tender in December asking vendors to bid on the development and deployment of the Union Home Ministry’s Automatic Multimodal Biometric Identification System (AMBIS). The project is headed by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) at

Mastercard to leverage the Digital India initiative

Mastercard said it is considering integrating facial recognition technology, Masterpass and other online payment methods with other services it currently offers in India, according to a report by The Tech Portal. The move is part of Mastercard’s plans to expand its investment in the country by over 30 percent, particularly in the e-commerce space. The investment aligns with the Indian government’s Digital India initiative, which aims to make government services available to citizens electronically by enhanced online infrastructure and by

DCB Bank to introduce iris scans for Aadhaar authentication

Indian financial institution DCB Bank will soon introduce a new feature at all its branches which enables Aadhaar-registered customers to perform transactions by scanning their iris,, according to a report by Economic Times. The bank recently completed a three-week pilot program at 10 branches in rural or semi-urban areas in which it processed about 200 accounts. This included 100 new pre-opened accounts, which took the bank about a day to map the customer’s iris biometric details to a particular account.

Indian government may allow citizens to use Aadhaar ID for income tax return

The Indian government is considering introducing a new option that would allow individuals who do not have a Permanent Account Number (PAN) card to use an Aadhaar card, according to Economic Times. The Ratan Watal panel report on promoting digital payments recommended that the government follow the practices of developed countries, such as the United States, in order to increase its tax base. “The committee studied that in countries like the USA, the tax return can be filed with social

India to make UIDAI registration mandatory for all Aadhaar authentication devices

Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the government agency in charge of Aadhaar, is expected to make it mandatory for manufacturers to embed the Aadhaar encryption key into biometric devices using Aadhaar authentication, according to a report by the Business Standard. Although all current Aadhaar-connected mobile devices are STQC certified, embedding UIDAI‘s encryption key into the devices will provide an additional layer of security to the hardware as biometric-based digital payments become more prevalent throughout the country. Amitabh Kant, National

India working to replace cash with biometric e-payment

The chief executive of India’s leading economic development agency told attendees at the World Economic Forum in Davos that the country could introduce biometric payments within three years, thereby eliminating the need for cash and typical electronic payment methods, including: automated teller machines, along with debit and credit cards. Amitabh Kant, National Institution for Transforming India, was quoted in a CNN news affiliate report as saying that such now commonplace e-payment methods may be “totally redundant” by 2020. According to

Bharti Airtel launches Aadhar-based digital banking service in India

Indian telecommunications firm Bharti Airtel officially launched Airtel Payments Bank last week in India, following a series of successful pilot programs in Rajasthan, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, according to a report by Asian News International. Airtel Payments Bank takes a paperless banking approach through Aadhaar-based e-KYC, enabling any individual with an Aadhaar card, PAN card or smartphone with Internet connectivity to access the digital banking service. The company has also updated its My Airtel app with a Payments Bank option

Biometric workforce tracking startup SecurAX raises funding

Bangalore-based biometric workforce tracking startup SecurAX has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Axilor, Parampara Early Stage Opportunities Fund and an undisclosed group of angel investors, according to a report by The Tech Portal. SecurAX is planning to use the funds to improve its technology offerings, expand its customer base, and ramp up its operations across India and the Middle East. Currently, the company’s B2B SaaS biometric platform is being used by 75,000 end users across 125 customers. The