In order to increase the privacy of Aadhaar Number and Demographic Data, UIDAI will introduce a 16 digit Virtual ID. The new Virtual ID will have the concept randomness and ‘Limited KYC‘. Let’s find out how this will help UIDAI to prevent an unnecessary data breach and increase privacy.

What is Virtual ID?

Virtual ID is a 16 digit temporary number which can be generated using your Aadhaar Number.  As per the official report, UIDAI allows a person to generate as many virtual IDs he or she wants. However, a virtual ID once generated is valid for a limited period of time or till the user generates a new one.

What is Limited KYC?

The ‘Limited KYC’ will only provide need-based or limited details of a user to an authorized local agency after a biometric authentication. For example, UIDAI shares only the name, address, and photograph of a user which are enough for any verification. This concept along with Virtual ID gives privacy to your 12 digit Aadhaar Number and Demographic Data.

Aadhaar number holder can use the Virtual ID in lieu of Aadhaar number whenever authentication or KYC services are performed. Authentication may be performed using the Virtual ID in a manner similar to using Aadhaar number,” a UIDAI circular said.

Supreme Court Extends Aadhaar Linking Deadline For Various Services

These newly introduced concepts will prevent the agencies from storing the Aadhaar Number of users along with extra demographic data. “While it is important to ensure that Aadhaar number holders can use their identity information to avail many products and services, the collection and storage of Aadhaar numbers by various entities has heightened privacy concerns,”. To make it clear, a global authentication agency will have access to e-KYC information and can store the Aadhaar Number. Whereas any local authentication agency will be prohibited from storing the Aadhaar Number in their database.

Key Points Of UIDAI Approach
  • Random 16 digits Virtual ID instead of Aadhaar Number.
  • Limited KYC concept instead of sharing whole demographic info.
  • The concept of Global and Local authentication agency.

UIDAI has been working on this concept for several months following the push from non-governmental technology research groups. However, they decided to announce the expedited launch of this feature since Aadhaar privacy concerns were at its peak.

As per the announcement, UIDAI will release the necessary software by 1st March 2018 and all the registered agencies are required to start shifting to the new system by 28th March 2018. It is also said that 1st June  2018 will be the deadline for all agencies to fully migrate and failure will result in fines and lose of registration. Hope the article was useful, Peace!

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