eKYC (electronic Know Your Customer) services was one of the UIDAIs’ pet ideas. Over the last 6 months, there has been extensive testing of the end-to-end channel, to ensure minimal glitches in the commercial launch.
Today, the UIDAIs’ eKYC was formally opened for commercial usage.
The core idea of the eKYC Aadhaar service is to enable individuals to authorise service providers to receive electronic copy of their proof of identity and address. The eKYC service can be deployed by different agencies to verify a resident’s identity and address.
Only demographic information (Name, Address, Date of Birth, Gender, Photograph & Mobile Number) that is collected during Aadhaar enrolment will be shared, at the request of, and/or with the consent of the Aadhaar number holder.
However the information will be available only for few seconds to the service provider to avoid any misuse.
The service providers have to set up the required IT Infrastructure to establish linkage with the core Aadhaar server. As of now with 35 crs Aadhaar numbers already issued, sufficient safeguards have been built in to ensure that the accessed data is not abused. However, more safeguards will be introduced as and when any abuse is noticed. And, we Indians are famous for working round the system.
The eKYC service stipulates that the data will be shared at the request of, and/or with the consent of the Aadhaar number holder.
Digitally signed electronic KYC data provided by UIDAI is machine readable, making it possible for the service provider to directly store it as the customer record in their database for purposes of service, audit, etc. without human intervention making the process low cost and error free.
The Aadhaar e-KYC API returns data along with a unique transaction code. The fact that the data is digitally signed by UIDAI and that every transaction has a unique code makes it possible to perform an electronic audit at a later point in time for any particular transaction. Ideally, the Unique Transaction Code should be part of the Service Provider’s database, for easy grievance resolution.
Like all new products, initially this service is offered by UIDAI free of cost.