November 20th, 2011
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UID does not pass security criteria: Home Minister

ChidambaramNew Delhi: Several people have raised concerns regarding the feasibility, liability and accountability of the UID project. But most of the apprehensions and queries fell on deaf ears. Now Home Minister P Chidambaram has said that the biometric census done by the Unique Identification project does not pass any security criteria.

“The possibility of fake identity profile in the UID data is real,” Chidambaram said. The Home Ministry claims that UID can be generated by producing documents without any verification. In a letter to Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Mr Chidambaram has made it clear that data collected by the UIDAI does not meet the degree of assurances required under the National Population Register from the point of view of national security.

He has said that the possibility of inclusion of non usual residents and creation of a false identity profile is also real.

The worried minister has demanded that the biometric issue should be taken up immediately by the Cabinet committee on UID. The Registrar General and Census Commissioner said that the job of collecting biometric data should be left to them.

UIDAI Chairperson Nandan Nilekani, however continues to defend the biometric procedure. “The Aadhaar cards have been given based on the UID data taken as per the accepted procedure.

“As far as the enrollment of residents is concerned, the UIDAI follows three methods (approved by Demographics Standards and Verification Procedure Committee) for collecting data: Document based, Introducer based as well as the NPR process. This data (both demographic and Biometric) is the basis on which the unique Aadhaar number is issued,” Nilekani a letter he sent to CNN IBN.

This controversial claim by the Home ministry has come in the wake of reportd that Uid enrollments can be done without any checks.UID can be generated by producing documents without any verification. A Mumbai resident can get his UID number in Delhi. Also, all residents are not being covered and there is no legal sanctity to data collected.

There has also been a serious showdown between the Registrar General of India and the UIDAI on whether the Aadhaar data that includes photographs, fingerprints and the iris can be used for the National Population Registrar in its present form.

The Registrar General’s contention is that Nilekani’s department should issue the Unique Identity Number, but the job of collecting biometric data should be left to the Registrar General.

The question is whether the Aadhaar data can be used in its present form even if the Home Ministry is reluctant to accept it. Aadhaar has so far generated 12 crore Unique Identity Numbers with a budget of Rs 470 crore. It is authorised to create UIDs for 20 crore people. The Cabinet Committee on UIDAI is expected to resolve this deadlock.

If  UID numbers can be generated using fake identities and stolen data, the fear in the Home Ministry is that even terrorists from across the border can get themselves enrolled. Besides, it negates the very purpose of creating a secure data base of people across the country.

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One Response to “ UID does not pass security criteria: Home Minister ”

  1. Amjad Pasha

    No use of discussing this matter after issuing crores of Cards to the citizens. It should be done before approving the project.

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