1. UIDAI-Airtel Payments Bank case: Company claims no wrongdoing, here’s how you can avoid the trap

UIDAI-Airtel Payments Bank case: Company claims no wrongdoing, here’s how you can avoid the trap

Despite the verification process being less cumbersome and loaded with various advantages, it’s always expected of the customers to read the instructions carefully and only then provide confirmation.

By: | Published: December 18, 2017 1:31 PM
Bharti Airtel, Bharti Airtel stock rating, Airtel DTH business, DTH business, WACC, ARPU, Morgan Stanley UIDAI’s e-KYC services can be used by customers to go through electronic verification of their identity. (Image: PTI)

Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) temporarily barred Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank from conducting Aadhaar linked e-KYC verification of SIMs and bank clients. More than 23 lakh customers have reportedly received as many as Rs 47 crore in their Airtel bank accounts, which they did not know had been opened. Sources said it was brought to the notice of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) that at the time of mobile verification using Aadhaar e-KYC, the Airtel retailers were also opening Airtel Payments Bank accounts, without the informed consent of the user. Government LPG subsidy was also getting transferred to these accounts, without their consent. The company however responded by saying no bank account was opened without the consent of the customers and additional safeguards have been introduced. “We can confirm that we have received an interim order from the UIDAI regarding temporary suspension of Aadhaar linked e-KYC services till their satisfaction on certain processes relating to Airtel Payment Bank’s onboarding of customers. We are engaging with the authority and are hopeful of an early resolution. We are also undertaking to complete the said actions on priority and have commenced thorough checks of our process flows. Being compliant to all guidelines is paramount to us. In the interim, any inconvenience to our customers in regretted.” added Airtel spokesperson. Keeping the entire incident in mind, here we come up with some pointers that will guide you to remain more careful while completing the know your customer (KYC) process and avoid any trap.

Read instructions properly

UIDAI’s e-KYC services can be used by customers to go through electronic verification of their identity, thereby reducing the amount of time that would otherwise be spent on completing the process physically while opening a new trading account or bank account, or availing a new mobile connection, and others. However, the customers still need to be vigilant. Despite the verification process being less cumbersome and loaded with various advantages, it’s always expected of the customers to read the instructions carefully and only then provide confirmation – be it online or in form of paper documents. Majority of the customers provide their go ahead without going through the instructions in detail. There is every possibility, or a trap laid down by a company, that a customer may end of applying for a number of unwanted services provided by the company without his consent. At times in case of paper-KYC, the retailers also discourage customers to fill in their personal details to save time only to complete the formalities later by themselves, resulting in availing the undesirable services.

Welcome message

As per media reports, when UIDAI reviewed the Airtel mobile app, it found that when the app is opened, along with the welcome message a pre-ticked consent box is momentarily flashed on the screen which states “Upgrade or create my Airtel Payment Bank wallet using existing Airtel mobile KYC.”

Direct Benefit Transfer

The government is also reportedly looking to overhaul its process for linking direct benefit transfers (DBT) to bank accounts and Aadhaar, as per The Economic Times report. Under the existing scenario, existing subsidy amount is automatically overwritten with the latest Aadhaar-linked bank account. As much as Rs 167 crore was deposited by 31.21 lakh customers in their Airtel Payments Bank accounts which were activated without their informed consent.

Get latest news and updates on Auto Expo 2018, check breaking news on Budget 2018, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

  1. R
    Reader
    Dec 18, 2017 at 10:00 pm
    A centralized and inter-linked biometric database like Aadhaar will lead to profiling and self-censorship. Personal data gathered under the Aadhaar program is prone to misuse and surveillance. Aadhaar project has created a vulnerability to identi-ty fraud, even identi-ty theft. Easy harvesting of biometrics traits and publicly-available Aadhaar numbers increase the risk of impersonation, especially online and banking fraud. BIOMETRICS CAN BE FAKED. High-resolution cameras can capture your fingerprints and iris information from a distance. Every eye hospital will have iris images of its patients. So another person can clone your fingerprints and iris images without your knowledge, and the same can be used for authentication. If the Aadhaar scheme is NOT STOPPED by the Supreme Court, the biometric features of Indians will soon be cloned, misused, and even traded. If the biometric details of a person are COMPROMISED ONCE, then even a new Aadhaar card will not help that person.
    Reply
    1. R
      Reader
      Dec 18, 2017 at 9:59 pm
      UK’s Biometric ID Database was dismantled. Why the United Kingdom's biometrics-linked National Identi-ty Card project to create a centralized register of sensitive information about residents similar to Aadhaar was scrapped in 2010?? The reasons were the massive threat posed to the privacy of people, the possibility of a surveillance state, the dangers of maintaining such a huge centralized repository of personal information and the purposes it could be used for, the dangers of such a centralized database being hacked, and the unreliability of such large-scale biometric verification processes. The Aadhaar program was designed in 2009 by mainly considering the 'Identi-ty Cards Act 2006' of UK, but the UK stopped that project in 2010, whereas India continued with the biometrics-based program. We must think why the United Kingdom abandoned their project and destroyed the data collected. (Google: 'Identi-ty Cards Act 2006' and 'Identi-ty Documents Act 2010' )
      Reply
      1. R
        Reader
        Dec 18, 2017 at 9:59 pm
        The US Social Security Number (SSN) card has NO BIOMETRIC DETAILS, no photograph, no physical description and no birth date. All it does is confirm that a particular number has been issued to a particular name. Instead, a driving license or state ID card is used as an identification for adults. The US government DOES NOT collect the biometric details of its own citizens for the purpose of issuing Social Security Number. The US collects the fingerprints of only those citizens who are involved in any criminal activity (it has nothing to do with SSN), and the citizens of other countries who come to the US.
        Reply
        1. R
          Ramesh Prajapati
          Dec 18, 2017 at 4:32 pm
          Because of Government negligence operator get courage to do any thing. Still customer don't believe in consumer court.
          Reply

          Go to Top