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How Important is Aadhar Biometrics to You?

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How Important is Aadhar Biometrics to You?
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As per Government guidelines, every Aadhar Cardholder in India is required to Link his or her Mobile Number and SIM with this or her Aadhar through Biometric Authentication and in the absence of such linkage your Your Smart Phone may Stop Working!. While we had warned the public in advance to get the process completed by the deadline of February 06, 2018, we had also cautioned the Government of India of the likely Misuse of Aadhar Verified SIMs in case the number of SIMs is not restricted to one or two to only Major (Excluding Minors) Aadhar Card Holders. Presently any Aadhar Card Holder can easily get more than 50 Aadhar Verified SIM as there is no restriction on the number of SIMs to issued to an Aadhar Card Holder. Every Aadhar Card Holder can obtain 5 or even more than 5 SIMs from different Network Providers like Idea, Vodafone, Airtel, Reliance, BSNL, Aircel, Telenor, Jio, Tata Teleservices, MTNL and much more. Let the Government enact a law to freeze the existing SIM or Mobile Number before issuing fresh Aadhar Verified SIM to any Aadhar Card Holder in India and that too to only Major ( more than 18 years old and persons competent to enter into contract as per Indian Contract Act which will exclude lunatics, prisoners, minors etc.). If this is not done immediately the Government exercise of freezing SIMs on Feb 06, 2018 will be biggest ever blunder by GOI causing huge loss to the exchequer as Government will be compelled again to do the exercise as being suggested by me from time to time. But I fear that the strong Lobby of Network Provider will not allow the Government to enact such a law as it will be determinantal to their business interests.

Now coming straight to the point about the misuse of Aadhar Biometrics by Network Providers. Press news have started appearing about the Misuse of Aadhar Biometrics not only by Network Providers but also by Axis Bank, Mumbai-based Suvidhaa Infoserve and Bengaluru-based eMudhra against whom UIDAI has lodged a criminal complaint with the cyber cell of Delhi Police.

When I went to a Vodafone Retailer last week to get my SIM Linked with Aadhar, I got two emails and messages from UIDAI that my Biometrics had been used twice within a short span of 1-2 minutes whereas I had given my fingerprints only once. Immediately I sounded Alarm-Bells to UIDAI Help Center through legally worded notice to them as they were the sole custodians of my biometrics. Thank God, UIDAI confirmed me in writing that it was genuine to receive 2 authentication SMSes and emails. I am a highly qualified person having more than average knowledge of changing modern technology and I keep myself updated with the latest technologies as Digital India is undergoing Technological Upgradation in every sphere of life and I am of the confirmed opinion that substantial frauds occur during the transitional and migration stages of Manual Systems to Fully Computerised Systems.

Government while implementing rapid Technological Upgradtion of systems must take into account that India is a country of poverty ridden people with very low level of education and both Poor and Illiterate people are likely to fall prey into the hands of unscrupulous and extra smart elements who can defraud both the Poor and Illiterate populations – comprising more than 65% of the Indian Population. In my bid to secure my Biometrics I am continuously searching for solutions to prevent Misuse of my Aadhar Biometrics. In my Last article on My Every Minute Diary, I had discussed as to how to lock your biometrics but the old procedure could make you handicap as in case of dire need you will have to instantly enable of the biometric facility to prove your Identity.

How Important is Aadhar Biometrics to You?

For me, my Aadhar Biometrics are utmost importance as if I confirm anything through Aadhar Biometrics it will be legally binding upon me. I think that Aadhar Biometrics should be equally Important to you also. Now UIDAI has come out with a mAadhaar mobile application on Google Play Store. The application is developed by Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) to provide an interface to Aadhaar Number Holders to carry their demographic information viz. Name, Date of Birth, Gender & Address along with photograph as linked with their Aadhaar Number in smartphones. Through this wonderful application, the users can lock and unlock their Aadhar Biometrics within seconds even while on the move. It works wonders and now you can be sure that key to your Aadhar Biometrics iis in your hands in the shape of Mobile Smart Phone. Its Key Features are reproduced below:

Key Features:
  1. Aadhaar Number Holder profile download – A convenient way to carry Aadhaar number with demographic details anytime, anywhere.
  2. Biometric locking/unlocking – To secure biometric authentication by locking biometrics data. Once resident enables Biometric Locking system their biometric remains locked till the Aadhaar Holder chose to either Unlock it (which is temporary) or Disable the Locking system.
  3. TOTP generation – Time-based One-Time Password is an automatically generated temporary password which can be used instead of SMS based OTP.
  4. Update of profile – An updated view of Aadhaar profile data after successful completion of the update request.
  5. Sharing of QR code and eKYC data by Aadhaar Number holder – Share QR code and password protected eKYC data to retrieve accurate demographic information from it instead of manual entry.

Note for Users:

Registered Mobile Number is essential to use the mAadhaar app. In case your mobile number is not registered with Aadhaar visit the nearest Enrolment Centre/Mobile Update End Point.

Usage Guidelines:

  • The application will ask for a password as soon as it is opened as the first step. The user should enter a password of length minimum 8 and maximum 12 characters.The password should contain at least 1 number, 1 alphabet, 1 special character ( @,#,&,%,*,!,-,(,) ) and 1 alphabet in capital e.g. Verma@123
  • Aadhaar profile can be downloaded only on mobile devices having a registered mobile number (Registered mobile number is the mobile number linked with your Aadhaar).
  • Please do not navigate from the application if it is waiting for SMS. mAadhaar will automatically read the OTP once it is received.
  • There is no provision to manually enter the OTP anywhere in mAadhaar. This is a security feature.
  • mAadhaar needs to connect and download data from UIDAI. To ensure that internet connectivity is available on your phone.
  • One Aadhaar profile can be active on only one device at a time. If you create the profile on another device by inserting the sim in another device, the previous profile would become inactive and would be deleted from older device whenever any operation is attempted from that device.
  • If members of your family have the same mobile number registered as you in their Aadhaar, you can add their profile to your device.
  • A user can add maximum 3 profiles in his device, all having same mobile number registered in their Aadhaar.
  • In case of any issue or query, please write to feedback.maadhaar@uidai.net.in

Special Note:
If you are getting issues while connecting to the server, immediately after you have updated the app, please uninstall and install again. Its a known issue and will be resolved in the next update.

The Author of this article is a Leading Legal and CIBIL Consultant in India.

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