Authentication using Aadhaar number crosses 500 crore mark

NEW DELHI: Despite a slowdown in Aadhaar-enabled payment authentication in February, authentication using the unique identification number has crossed the 500 crore mark while e-KYC — used for bank and PDS verification as well as getting SIM cards — has gone past the 100 crore mark.

This means that on an average, 112 crore Aadhaar holders have used their ID 4.5 times for authentication. While there was a spike in December and January when currency was scarce due to demonetisation, the numbers for February indicate that usage was lower last month. But the over 44 crore authentications in February 2017 was roughly three-and-a-half times the level seen a year ago.

Besides demonetisation, increased use of fingerprint and iris devices have helped. At the end of January, there were over 13 lakh fingerprint devices in use, which was over 6.5 times the level a year ago. The jump in iris devices has been much lower, from roughly 23,000 to around 27,000.In fact, the number has actually come down from the peak of 35,600 seen in September.

Capture1“There is considerable ease in using Aadhaar-based authentication apart from several advantages with the entire process being realti me,” UIDAI CEO Ajay Bhushan Pandey told TOI.
Pandey said the agency has made every attempt to ensure top priority for data protection. “We are constantly trying to add various layers of security to ensure that there is no compromise on security,” he said, adding that the law had enabled initiation of strict action against anyone misusing Aadhaar data.
“We are constantly trying to add various layers of security to ensure that there is no compromise on security,” he said, adding that the law had enabled initiation of strict action against anyone misusing Aadhaar data.