The UIDAI today asked people to take "due precautions" while sharing their personal information such as Aadhaar on the internet for availing any service.
Playing down reports of Aadhaar PDF being allegedly available through Google search query of Mera Aadhaar, Meri Pehchan, UIDAI claimed that the issue had "nothing to do with the security of Aadhaar and its database".
On Wednesday, a French security expert, who goes by the name Elliot Alderson on social media but his real name is Baptiste Robert, posted a video on Twitter, saying "How to bypass the password protection of the official Aadhaar android app in 1 minute". In this video, he explained flaws in the UIDAI's mobile app, saying how one's Aadhaar information can be obtained by bypassing the password mechanism in the app. The hacker even advised people not to the Android app.
"People share their personal information, including Aadhaar on internet, to some or other service provider or vendor to get the services and when they put their details on internet they should take due precautions as required in any digital activities," Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) said in a statement.
Asserting the robustness of the Aadhaar identity system, the nodal body, which issues the 12 digit biometric identifier, said that "publication or posting of Aadhaar cards by some unscrupulous people have absolutely no bearing on UIDAI and not the least on Aadhaar security".
"These (reports) are far from the reality and have got nothing to do with the security of Aadhaar and its database. As none of the Aadhaar cards shown are taken from UIDAI database," the statement said.
Emphasising that just like any other identity document, Aadhaar too is not a confidential document, UIDAI argued that mere knowledge about someone's Aadhaar card is not sufficient to impersonate that person as biometric authentication is needed to establish ones identity.
While Aadhaar has to be shared with others, being a personal information like mobile number, bank account number, PAN card, passport, family details, etc, Aadhaar too should be protected to ensure privacy of a person, UIDAI said.
"If anybody unauthorisedly publishes someone's personal information such as Aadhaar card, mobile number, bank account, photograph, etc., he can be sued for civil damages by the person whose privacy right is infringed," UIDAI statement noted.
However, it said, such publication does not threaten or impact security of Aadhaar and its database which remains "safe and secure".
The statement by UIDAI come in backdrop of reports claiming that information about Aadhaar may be available from third party websites, and that a Google search may lead to Aadhaar details of several people.
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