Mobile e-KYC norms soon

The department of telecom (DoT) is set to announce e-KYC norms in the next few weeks.

The move will enable customers to get new mobile connections within a few minutes, while telecom companies can save over Rs 1,000 crore per year by avoiding term fines and paper-based verification.

Term fines are imposed on the operators who fail to verify subscribers’ identity and address according to prescriber norms.

“The DoT will come up with one reform-oriented measure every month. We expect to put in place e-KYC guidelines in weeks rather than month,” telecom secretary J.S. Deepak said.

After the government finalises the norms, it will enable instant identity verification using Aadhaar card biometric data for a new mobile connection.

A KYC or Know-Your-Customer process that identifies an individual is mandatory before issuing a new SIM card.

According to a study by the Unique Identification Authority of India, telecom companies can save over Rs 1,000 crore every year provided they use Aadhaar authentication to verify identity and address of their prospective subscribers.

As on September 30, 2015, a total penalty of Rs 2,513.44 crore was imposed on the operators for violating customer verification norms.

According to the proposal, a customer holding Aadhaar number biometrics such as finger print or eyes will be scanned for verification and a SIM card will be activated immediately after authentication.

The process is also expected to reduce fake connections in the country.