Activist's Aadhaar card biometrically-authenticated; but he never applied for one

30 Jun 2017 | By Shikha Chaudhry
Another issue with Aadhaar!

Aadhaar cards were introduced to provide unique identity to people and eliminate "duplicates" and "ghosts".

But, what if a ghost applies for your Aadhaar card and biometrically authenticates it?

Civil liberties activist Gopal Krishna, who never even applied for an Aadhaar card, was in a similar situation when he was informed that his 12-digit Aadhaar number has been authenticated.

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In context: Another issue with Aadhaar!

30 Jun 2017Activist's Aadhaar card biometrically-authenticated; but he never applied for one

AuthenticationEmails regarding Aadhaar authentication

Earlier in Jun'17, Gopal Krishna had received many emails from the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) that his Aadhaar card had been electronically authenticated.

The authentication process involves submitting several documents and getting fingerprints and iris scanned.

After receiving the first Aadhaar authentication message addressed to 'P Krishna', he pointed out the flaw to the UIDAI on Twitter.

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Signatory to petitions challenging decision to make Aadhaar mandatory

FlawsSignatory to petitions challenging decision to make Aadhaar mandatory

Krishna, Citizens Forum for Civil Liberties' member, questioned how his Aadhaar can be authenticated without his biometrics and iris even when he didn't apply for it.

He legally challenged the widespread use of Aadhaar cards and has signed petitions challenging the government's decision to make Aadhaar mandatory.

The government has been making efforts to link Aadhaar to government schemes and also I-T returns.

Weak backend support for managing biometrics, details: Krishna

While Krishna said his case highlights a "weak backend support", the UIDAI said there was no glitch in the system. It said authentication messages are sent to email ids provided by applicants, hinting it could be a mix-up at privately-run Aadhaar enrolment centers.

Another glitchMS Dhoni's personal details leaked

The Centre has been seeking to make Aadhaar mandatory as it is necessary to "plug leakages" in welfare schemes and subsidies.

However, critics say the government's "privacy violating" decision is vulnerable to data breaches and helps it spy on people.

In Mar'17, an enrolment agency leaked Indian cricketer MS Dhoni's details; the incident exposed flaws in Aadhaar's data collection and storage system.