Aadhaar eKYC verification for phone users to start soon: here’s all your questions, answered

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Published: March 27, 2017 12:27:18 PM

Users of mobile phone services will now have to verify using Aadhaar numbers, as the telcos have been instructed to start the process. Here's all that you need to know.

aadhaar, aadhaar mobile subscriber, mobile users aadhar card, aadhaar ekyc, aadhaar telecom, dot, dept of telecom, aadhaar mandatory, aadhaar card, sim card aadhaarGoverment has given one years? time to your network service providers in order to carry out this eKYC process. (Representative image, Reuters)

Users of mobile phone services will now have to verify using Aadhaar numbers, as the telcos have been instructed to start the process. COAI has said its members might soon have a meeting with and aim to talk about the modalities of launching the verification process for the current over a billion mobile phone users. Aadhaar card is fast becoming a crucial thing to have in India, especially with they way the government is making it mandatory in a lot of sectors and services.

The DoT’s order says: “All licensees shall re-verify all existing mobile subscribers (prepaid and postpaid) through an Aadhaar-based e-KYC process.” The DoT has given one years’ time, till February 6, 2018, to service providers in order to carry out this eKYC process. Earlier the Supreme Court had issued an order regarding this issue back in February. Network providing companies will also have to upload the details of the exercise on their website.

What is the Aadhaar based eKYC exactly?

If you decide to stay with your old phone number or get a new one, you must have to verify them using your Aadhaar number. eKYC is an online version of the usual Know Your Customer form. Not only your banks but now even your network provider should have your data, like your name, age, address, date of birth etc.

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What needs to be done?

In the case of Aadhaar based KYC, your name, location and other details need to be verified through the Aadhaar authentication online. You will have to provide your Aadhaar number and do the biometric verification in order to complete the KYC.

After the eKYC process has been completed, before updating or overwriting the old subscriber detail in the database with the data received through the eKYC process, the licensee will seek confirmation from the subscriber about the re-verification of his/her mobile number after 24 hours through SMS.

When do you need to get the eKYC done with your network provider?

It is not urgent as of now, but once your start receiving alerts, you should complete the process immediately. There will be advertisements on newspapers and televisions when the eKYC needs to be done. This is because network providers will be compelled to do so, after the directive by the government.

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How much will the whole process cost?

COAI has pointed out the entire exercise will cost Rs 1,000 crore for infrastructure and training, which will have to be borne by the operators. COAI Director General Rajan Mathews, in a statement to PTI, said “The issue of fake subscribers will go away. We will try our best to cover the entire base within the stipulated time frame of one year but in case we cannot, we may ask DoT for an extension.”

If you want another number from the same telecom company, will your first eKYC be enough?

Sadly, the answer is no. According to the notification issued by DoT cited by PTI, In order to issue additional mobile connections to a re-verified subscriber, the operator would have to follow a separate eKYC process. This means that if you have an Airtel or Idea connection, and you get it re-verified too, you will still have to do another eKYC in order to get the second number from them. This is a very long and hard process to complete each time. At least you can convert your number from pre-paid to post-paid without doing the eKYC again.

Who will be affected by this decision?

With a population of more than a billion, in a developing country like India, there is a huge number of people who use mobiles. But a large portion of that population still does not have an Aadhaar card who will not be able to continue using phones. This means that each and every user will be affected by this.

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