Experts debate Aadhaar 'loopholes'

 Experts on Sunday opined that glitches in software were among the flaws in the Aadhaar system developed by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI).

K Gopinath, professor, Indian Institute of Science, who was part of a discussion on Aadhaar, organised by the Citizens for Democracy, said that the source code of the software used for storing data was not ideal. 

“It is always best to have an open source code as the data will be more secure. But, in case of Aadhaar, it is not so,” he explained, adding that most countries in the West preferred having an open source code and India too could go for the same.

He also said that while system consistency was an impossible goal to achieve, there was no mechanism to use a stand-by in case of system breakdown, the possibility of which too was not low. “In the present system, there is always a possibility of false positives and negatives,” he added.

V K Somashekar, convenor, Grahaka Swashakti, said that each individual had a right to identity. “If there is theft in some locality, would we all hand over the keys of our homes to the police? The situation of giving our biometric data to a non-constitutional authority is similar,” he said.

Renowned director T S Nagabharana pointed out that it was important to understand that although Aadhaar was given a lot of publicity, it was important to understand that Aadhaar was not mandatory. “There is no privacy or data protection security,” he added.

He also questioned the need to use a biometric system to determine one’s identity.

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