How unique is unique ID? We may soon have three of them!

It kind of takes the shine off the term 'unique'. We seem to have a bit too many unique IDs now.

In its policy document today, the Reserve Bank of India urged banks to adopt a unique customer identification code (UCIC) system for their clients to enable faster processing of financial transactions.

 How unique is unique ID? We may soon have three of them!

The unique customer ID will allow all banks to access customer data, and eliminate the need for customers to repeatedly fill out personal and other details with different banks. AFP

The unique customer ID will allow all banks to access customer data, and eliminate the need for customers to repeatedly fill out personal and other details with different banks if they decide to take multiple bank loans.

"While some of the Indian banks have already developed UCIC, there is no unique number to identify a single customer across the organisation in many banks."

As a first step, the RBI advised banks to start alloting UCIC numbers to all new individual customers.Existing individual customers can be allotted a UCIC by the end of April 2013.

Of course, that is not the only 'unique ID' plan in the offing.

Securities and Exchange Board of India chairman U K Sinha also has plans to implement a single know-your-customer clearance for all capital market activities. That, too, is based on the idea of allowing customers to have a unique ID that can be used across banks, insurance companies and brokerages for accessing different financial services.

And of course, we already have 'Aadhar', the original unique ID project under Nandan Nilekani, which was conceived as aunique identity that would be accepted nationally by banks, telecom providers, oil companies, and other government agencies to serve as a tool to better target social spending by making sure that benefits such as subsidies reach the poor for whom they are meant.

Updated Date: Dec 20, 2014 09:43:49 IST