Aadhaar card
Aadhaar cardIANS

Even as many Indian citizens are voicing their concern about their privacy being infringed owing to the Aadhaar card scheme, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) is exploring ways to use dummy numbers as an extra layer of security for Aadhaar cardholders.

According to an Economic Times report, if the plan works out then, an Aadhaar card user will have to use and share only his or her dummy or pseudo numbers while availing services under the Aadhaar-enabled payment system like moving funds from one bank account to another, government schemes etc.

The original Aadhaar number will be known only to UIDAI and the Aadhaar card holder.

However, the concept is yet to be finalised and worked on.

Here's how the concept may work?

This new security concept to protect the privacy of the Aadhaar card holders seems to be a slightly complex process as the user will be giving different dummy numbers at places where Aadhaar card is required.

In picture: The fingerprints of an individual are being recorded for Aadhaar enrolment. [Representational image]Wikimedia Commons

"It may not help if a permanent dummy number is given against every Aadhaar number. The primary job of Aadhaar is authentication — to ensure whether the right person is using the services. So, if there can be a dynamic system where an individual authenticates with the electricity company using one dummy number, with the telephone company using another dummy number, and generates new dummy numbers for monetary transactions like one time passwords (OTPs), then there is no one Aadhaar number that can be traced back to the person. And, in the absence of a single number, it is very difficult to misuse Aadhaar to track someone's personal data," a person familiar with the concept was quoted a s saying by the ET.

"It may be useful from the point of data security. But one has to think how convenient is the use of dummy numbers for various kinds of users," another official told the leading English daily.