1. UIDAI bars Bharti Airtel from conducting Aadhaar based SIM verification to hit telco’s customer acquisition drive

UIDAI bars Bharti Airtel from conducting Aadhaar based SIM verification to hit telco’s customer acquisition drive

Barring August when it lost 0.2 million subscribers, Bharti’s performance has been commendable. The operator added 3.6 million in January followed by 1.2 million in February and 2.9 million each in March and April.

By: | Published: December 19, 2017 5:20 AM
With the UIDAI temporarily barring Bharti Airtel from conducting Aadhaar-based SIM verification of subscribers via e-KYC, the acquisition process of country’s largest telecom operator will slow down “substantially”.

With the UIDAI temporarily barring Bharti Airtel from conducting Aadhaar-based SIM verification of subscribers via e-KYC, the acquisition process of country’s largest telecom operator will slow down “substantially”. It will now take Bharti Airtel around 3-4 days to add a customer against the Aadhaar-based procedure where verification is completed within a couple of hours. As a result, Bharti which has been adding close to 2 million subscribers every month may see customer acquisition slowing in the current month or till the matter is resolved. FE spoke with officials from leading telecom operators involved in customer verification, who said with Bharti being suspended from using the e-KYC process, it will have to do a manual verification using the customer application form (CAF), which can take anywhere between 3-4 days to complete. “Aadhaar-based e-KYC verification taken less than an hour. With manually completing CAF, the process will take 3-4 days. This is going to hit it subscriber acquisition momentum substantially,” they added.

Barring August when it lost 0.2 million subscribers, Bharti’s performance has been commendable. The operator added 3.6 million in January followed by 1.2 million in February and 2.9 million each in March and April. In May, June and July, it added 2.1 million, 2.05 million and 0.6 million subscribers, respectively. Similarly, it added 1 million and 3.15 million subscribers in September and October, respectively. On December 16, UIDAI suspended the e-KYC licence key of Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank with immediate effect. The suspension was slapped on the operator following charges that it used the Aadhaar-eKYC based SIM verification process to open payments bank accounts of its subscribers without their consent. This led to subsidy of LPG customers getting deposited in Bharti’s payments bank account due to change in the NPCI mapper. Sources said that PwC has been roped in to verify whether the allegations against Bharti are true. The process could take around 15-20 days to complete.

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  1. R
    Reader
    Dec 19, 2017 at 6:45 am
    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 19, 2017 at 6:45 am
      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 19, 2017 at 6:44 am
        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

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