Aadhaar

The UIDAI has taken two successive governments in India and the entire world for a ride. It identifies nothing. It is not unique. The entire UID data has never been verified and audited. The UID cannot be used for governance, financial databases or anything. It’s use is the biggest threat to national security since independence. – Anupam Saraph 2018

When I opposed Aadhaar in 2010 , I was called a BJP stooge. In 2016 I am still opposing Aadhaar for the same reasons and I am told I am a Congress die hard. No one wants to see why I oppose Aadhaar as it is too difficult. Plus Aadhaar is FREE so why not get one ? Ram Krishnaswamy

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.-Mahatma Gandhi

In matters of conscience, the law of the majority has no place.Mahatma Gandhi

“The invasion of privacy is of no consequence because privacy is not a fundamental right and has no meaning under Article 21. The right to privacy is not a guaranteed under the constitution, because privacy is not a fundamental right.” Article 21 of the Indian constitution refers to the right to life and liberty -Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi

“There is merit in the complaints. You are unwittingly allowing snooping, harassment and commercial exploitation. The information about an individual obtained by the UIDAI while issuing an Aadhaar card shall not be used for any other purpose, save as above, except as may be directed by a court for the purpose of criminal investigation.”-A three judge bench headed by Justice J Chelameswar said in an interim order.

Legal scholarUsha Ramanathandescribes UID as an inverse of sunshine laws like the Right to Information. While the RTI makes the state transparent to the citizen, the UID does the inverse: it makes the citizen transparent to the state, she says.

Good idea gone bad
I have written earlier that UID/Aadhaar was a poorly designed, unreliable and expensive solution to the really good idea of providing national identification for over a billion Indians. My petition contends that UID in its current form violates the right to privacy of a citizen, guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution. This is because sensitive biometric and demographic information of citizens are with enrolment agencies, registrars and sub-registrars who have no legal liability for any misuse of this data. This petition has opened up the larger discussion on privacy rights for Indians. The current Article 21 interpretation by the Supreme Court was done decades ago, before the advent of internet and today’s technology and all the new privacy challenges that have arisen as a consequence.Rajeev Chandrasekhar, MP Rajya Sabha

“What is Aadhaar? There is enormous confusion. That Aadhaar will identify people who are entitled for subsidy. No. Aadhaar doesn’t determine who is eligible and who isn’t,” Jairam Ramesh

But Aadhaar has been mythologised during the previous government by its creators into some technology super force that will transform governance in a miraculous manner. I even read an article recently that compared Aadhaar to some revolution and quoted a 1930s historian, Will Durant.Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Rajya Sabha MP

“I know you will say that it is not mandatory. But, it is compulsorily mandatorily voluntary,” Jairam Ramesh, Rajya Saba April 2017.

August 24, 2017: The nine-judge Constitution Bench rules that right to privacy is “intrinsic to life and liberty”and is inherently protected under the various fundamental freedoms enshrined under Part III of the Indian Constitution

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the World; indeed it's the only thing that ever has"

“Arguing that you don’t care about the right to privacy because you have nothing to hide is no different than saying you don’t care about free speech because you have nothing to say.” -Edward Snowden

In the Supreme Court, Meenakshi Arora, one of the senior counsel in the case, compared it to living under a general, perpetual, nation-wide criminal warrant.

Had never thought of it that way, but living in the Aadhaar universe is like living in a prison. All of us are treated like criminals with barely any rights or recourse and gatekeepers have absolute power on you and your life.

Announcing the launch of the#BreakAadhaarChainscampaign, culminating with events in multiple cities on 12th Jan. This is the last opportunity to make your voice heard before the Supreme Court hearings start on 17th Jan 2018. In collaboration with @no2uidand@rozi_roti.

UIDAI's security seems to be founded on four time tested pillars of security idiocy

1) Denial

2) Issue fiats and point finger

3) Shoot messenger

4) Bury head in sand.

God Save India

Friday, January 26, 2018

12785 - With privacy debate settled once and for all, 2018 likely to be Aadhaar's breakout year - Economic Times

With privacy debate settled once and for all, 2018 likely to be Aadhaar's breakout year
ET CONTRIBUTORS|

Jan 26, 2018, 07.38 AM IST

By Sanjay Jain 

Over the last few years, Aadhaar usage has gone up significantly. 

2017 was a banner year, with the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) servicing 10 billion authentication requests, and 3.5 billion electronic-Know Your Customer (eKYC) requests. 

September was the peak, where the UIDAI serviced an average of 48 million transactions a day. This is about 14,000 times the usage in September 2012. The number of systems that depend on Aadhaar as an identity provider have grown. 

2017 was a challenging year with many incidents and claims relating to biometrics, privacy and exclusion. The government has had to learn to walk the line between transparency and privacy, and now deal with the attentions of international hackers, all in the middle of a very noisy debate. The growth and accompanying challenges are a reflection of the increased digitisation, and formalisation, of the economy. Being at the leading edge of change, Aadhaar has become the lightning rod for discussion around privacy and governance. 

Out of these tough times, much good has come forth. The Justice Srikrishna Committee is looking at how users and their data must be protected through a new law. The Supreme Court has read a right to privacy in the Constitution. The UIDAI has emerged as a responsive, nimble organisation and a problem-solver. 

Looking at the recent changes in authentication, registered devices, virtual identity number, tokenisation, limited eKYC and face-matching, it appears that the UIDAI is set to tackle the issues, and to deliver on the promises of inclusion and security. Registered devices ensure that biometrics are captured live from sensors, digitally signed, encrypted and sent to the UIDAI without the possibility of interception, tampering or the injection of stored biometrics. This change was rolled out in 2017 and is now nearly complete. Users should be confident that no agency can intercept their biometrics, and use them for a different transaction. 

Virtual identification number and tokenisation will ensure that most user agencies will not be able to store Aadhaar number. They will not be able to use it for unauthorised linkage of databases. Limited eKYC adds more support to this by reducing the spread of sensitive information, improving on privacy protections. 

Face-matching will improve on inclusion. It will allow users who were previously unable to authenticate with fingerprints see higher success rates. It will also improve security for applications that currently use only a one-time password. Self-service applications will also use this feature. 

Other than authentication, the UIDAI has also made changes to the enrolment and update ecosystem. It has moved all enrolment and update activity to government premises and banks. Local governments have been asked to ensure at least three centres in each block/taluka. As a result, there will be capacity for updates and enrolments under greater supervision. 

So, in 2018, Aadhaar usage will cross 30 billion authentication transactions. 

The UIDAI will support the ecosystem to upgrade. It will continue to be responsive to user needs and make changes. These will include updating process through technology and the rollout of update centres. There will be a focus on auditing applications and grievance redressal. As a result, users should feel safer that the UIDAI is monitoring the ecosystem and on a journey of continuous improvement. 

Beyond Aadhaar, our lives are going to be more digital. Much remains to be done to protect our privacy. This is the year we will see the law come up for that. 

The writer is chief innovation officer, Centre for Innovation, Incubation and Entrepreneurship, IIM-Ahmedabad