UIDAI validates Aadhaar numbers. As soon as the authentication request reaches the UIDAI, the UIDAI compares the Aadhaar details with those in the Central Identities Data Repository (CIDR). The server does not disclose Aadhaar details.
While we may have adopted many administrative practices from the west after independence, one thing that we should have adopted for the longest time was the allocation of an identification number to each citizen of India. The oversight was rectified with the introduction of the Aadhaar card, which serves the sole purpose of authenticating the identity and the Indian citizenship of the holder of the card. Until then, we used government documents meant to serve some other purpose as ID cards.
For instance, a PAN card is meant for taxpayers but is used as a commonly accepted proof of identity. It goes similarly with voters’ ID, ration card, driving licence and passport. All these documents are issued to serve a specific purpose but could be used as an identity cards without a systematic allocation of citizenship numbers.
The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) was established in January 2009 to create a roster of the citizenry, with each citizen being allocated a unique identity number. This number is allocated on a physical card called the Aadhaar Card. The number is a unique 12-digit identification number. Since the Aadhaar card contains both the applicant’s demographic and biometric details, replicating or forging the document is difficult.
As a result, the Aadhaar card has made digital identification and verification more accessible than ever before. Not only does it help with online verification, but it also enables users to avail themselves of services, such as government subsidies, welfare schemes and other benefits. But to avail of these benefits, a citizen requires an authenticated Aadhaar card. So how does authentication of the Aadhaar card work? In this article, we will look at what Aadhaar card authentication is, how it works and why it is essential.
What Is Aadhaar Authentication?
As the name suggests, Aadhaar authentication is a mechanism through which the UIDAI verifies and validates an Aadhaar number. When the request for an authentication reaches the UIDAI, it cross-checks the details on the Aadhaar with the details available on their Central Identities Data Repository (CIDR).
In case the details provided match the details on their database, the system authenticates the Aadhaar card. To ensure that the Aadhaar details of the applicant are protected, the server does not disclose any other information along with this.
Need for Aadhaar Authentication
Several governments and public and private organisations use the Aadhaar Card for handing out welfare and benefit schemes. To ensure that the applicant deserves the benefit, they must verify and validate their identity. As a result, most organisations require the applicant to submit their proof of identity for the verification process.
However, since most other documents can be easily forged, organisations need help verifying these documents.
This is the problem that the Aadhaar card solves. Since the Aadhaar Card contains the biometric details of the individual, it is tough to duplicate it. Furthermore, the online verification platform maintained by UIDAI also makes Aadhaar authentication a simple and effective process. As a result, most organisations now verify and authenticate the identity of individuals via this platform before handing out subsidies and other benefits.
Most government and private organisations will require Aadhaar authentication to avail of their services shortly. Doing so will help them prevent undeserving candidates from accessing their welfare and benefit schemes.
How Does Aadhaar Authentication Work
Anyone can place a request for authentication of Aadhaar with the UIDAI. During such a process, the requester that requires verification sends the UIDAI an authentication request. The authority will then try to match the details provided with the information available on UIDAI’s CIDR.
If the details provided match, the system would notify the organisation with a simple ‘yes’. If not, then the authentication is declined with a ‘no’.
As UIDAI has strict laws regarding the sharing and storing Aadhaar details, it does not provide any other information to the service provider. This helps protect the applicant’s information, preventing other organisations from gaining access to personal information without the applicant’s prior approval. Also, the authority will only accept requests that abide by the laws and regulations detailed by it.
Modes Of Aadhaar Authentication
Here’s a look at the various methods of Aadhaar authentication.
This includes authentication of your details, such as your name, gender, date of birth and address. Every Aadhaar card applicant has to provide this information at the time of enrollment, and it becomes a part of the Aadhaar card details. For such authentication, the authority matches the details supplied with the details available in the CIDR.
OTPs are small passwords or PINs that are valid for a short period and may be used once to log in or complete a transaction online. Using an OTP for authentication allows the individual to verify their identity to avail of government or Aadhaar-linked services. The applicant asks the system to generate an OTP to verify their identity. This OTP is sent to the applicant’s registered mobile number. Once they receive the OTP, they can input it in the required field and click on Verify to complete the authentication process.
In this type of authentication, an individual is identified with the help of a unique biological trait associated with them. The feature may be any one of the following;
- Retina pattern
- Iris Pattern
- Sound waves
For Aadhaar authentication, the service providers ask for iris and fingerprint scans. To verify such details, the service provider has to send the biometric details collected along with the Aadhaar number of the applicant. The UIDAI will then cross-check these details with their sample of the applicant’s biometric information from the CIDR.
Certain agencies ask for multi-factor authentication to improve the security and efficiency of the verification. In such cases, the service provider may ask for any combination of the abovementioned authentication modes.
Benefits Of Aadhaar Authentication
- It helps maintain the integrity and security of the system
- Enables organisations to accurately and efficiently authenticate the identity of an applicant
- Significantly reduces the paperwork required of organisations
- Reduces the number of identity documents required significantly
- Dramatically simplifies the process of authentication for service providers
- Help with identifying and processing benefits to the most deserving candidates
- Enables organisations to weed out forged applications and stop corruption
- Helps with the authentication of online transactions via BHIM
- Does not give away all information and respects the privacy of the applicant
Aadhaar is just the foundation stone for several uses. The introduction of Aadhaar cards has made it easier for the equitable distribution of wealth by ensuring that the benefit schemes reach the intended beneficiaries. If you have any other queries regarding Aadhaar or need help with its authentication, get in touch with us, and our team of experts will guide you with your needs.
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