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It is not mandatory for people to share their Aadhaar number with government agencies, confirms UIDAI CEO

The CEO of UIDAI, Ajay Bhushan Pandey said that from 1 June 2018 onwards, people can choose whether they want to share their Aadhaar number with government and private agencies or not. These also include government agencies like the Income Tax Department as well.

Representational image. News18.

Representational image. News18.

In a report by The Economic Times, Ajay Bhushan Pandey, CEO of UIDAI in an interview confirmed that the decision to share the Aadhaar number can be made at the discretion of the user and that they can use the newly instituted Virtual ID system.

This virtual identity number can be used in lieu of the Aadhaar number. In fact from March onwards, people can choose to generate their Virtual ID which they can share with the authentication agencies.

Pandey also clarified that though service providers or authentication agencies may use Aadhaar details for authentication, they would not be able to save the data in their network. And if any service provider is found trying to retrieve the data, it would not be left unpunished as it is a criminal offence to do so.

From 1 June onwards, all authentication services will have to implement the new system. Those agencies that do not adopt the new system will have their licenses revoked.

On 10 January, UIDAI had introduced the concept of limited KYC where the authentication services can access only that data which they require.

UIDAI's move to increase the layer of privacy comes after a case of Aadhaar data breach was reported by The Tribune, where it was stated that Aadhaar details were up for grabs for just Rs 500.

Updated Date: Jan 12, 2018 13:11 PM

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