A shocking report in The Tribune states that they purchased access to the complete Aadhaar database including all information provided by Aadhaar number holders to the UIDAI for a mere Rs.500 for the access. The reporter, Rachna Khaira, posing as “Anamika” contacted a WhatsApp phone number 7610063464 and made the payment over PayTM and had a gateway access created for her within 10 minutes.

Payment of another Rs. 300 got her a software to facilitate printing of Aadhaar Cards.

According to Sanjay Jindal, Additional Director-General, UIDAI Regional Centre, Chandigarh, no one other than the Director-General and him should have a login access to the official portal. “Anyone else having access is illegal, and is a major national security breach.”

According to The Tribune’s estimate, the racket may have operated for six months and targeted 3 lakh ex-CSCS operators whose jobs were withdrawn. They estimate over a lakh such operators may have purchased the extremely inexpensive access in order to offer Aadhaar services to people for a fee.

Full story here.

The Quint reports that such widespread access was possible because the system allows admin users to add other admin users at their own discretion – with no verification required – including that of actual identity or nationality. Clearly while this was one seller, there are likely to be countless such sellers out there.

As per Truecaller, this number belongs to one Aniket Kumar (Anil) – “internet service provider”. Astonishingly, the number doesn’t yet appear to be disabled. One wonders what the authorities were doing after being alerted to a breach of this magnitude for the number to still be active.

Aniket Kumar - Aadhaar Scam data seller
Aniket Kumar – Aadhaar Scam data seller

How long is the government and UIDAI going to risk the life’s earnings, personal information and security of citizens of India for their white elephant? How long will national security continue to be at risk with brazen disregard for technology experts providing caution and the Supreme Court providing unambiguous judgments and orders?

Are we still going to hear that the Aadhaar database is perfectly safe? Who is responsible for the personal information of the entire country being compromised?

Will heads roll?

Destroy the Aadhaar and prosecute its perpetrators already!

Vidyut is a commentator on socio-political issues with a keen understanding of tech and policy. She has been observing and commenting on Aadhaar since 2010 from a perspective of human rights, democracy and technological robustness.

3 thoughts on “Game over. Aadhaar Database breached

  1. “Aadhaar” is a brand name given to deceive people into imagining that it has some magical powers. Even Supreme Court judges have been taken in by the ploy. They have observed in cases before them, “Why don’t you use Aadhaar?” This is the purpose of brand building in marketing of products. The foundation of “Aadhaar” is the false notion that biometric identification leads to a unique identity. That this is NOT true has been proved scientific research and mathematically. Instead of promoting the brand name by using it, even in criticism, it would be useful to destroy the brand by always prefixing the phrase “Sham ID” before the brand name, whenever you use the name in your website. So, it’s always, “Sham ID, Aadhaar”

  2. I don’t want to leave my contact details for the reason it takes away my enormous time while exchanging views by any mode.
    Coming to AADHAR my view is that like so many modes launched by various Governments this is also Good. BUT INDIA IS KNOWN FOR LACK OF ENFORCEMENT OF LAW. Example – You can’t see a single person staying in SINGAPORE who doesn’t have Citizenship / visa of their country. No body can be without possessing ID which is linked to all your financial transactions. The Government / employer and not the individual files IT Returns. Punishment for any offence is executed instantaneously. Here you do any offence and escape easily for life time or the judgement is pronounced only after death that too for political reasons.

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