UIDAI Barred Airtel from Aadhaar SIM Verification

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The UIDAI has barred Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank from conducting Aadhaar-based SIM verification of mobile customers using eKYC process as well as e-KYC of payments bank clients.

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 informed consent of the user.

Government LPG subsidy was also getting transferred to these accounts, without their consent.

Airtel would not be able to, in the interim, carry out ‘electronic-verification’ or link mobile SIMs of its customers with their 12-digit biometric national ID Aadhaar though the efficient and paperless eKYC (or electronic Know Your Customer) process of UIDAI.

Airtel Payments Bank will not be able to open a new account with Aadhaar e-KYC. However, accounts can be opened through alternate methods, if available.

As per agreement with the authority, Airtel and Airtel Bank are duty bound and under obligation to ensure security and privacy of residents’ identity information.

Security and privacy of Aadhaar data is a highly sensitive matter and the Supreme Court is looking into its various aspects.

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