The Aadhaar-enabled Payment System (AePS) is a bank-led model which allows online transactions at small PoS or MicroATM. The transactions are done using Aadhaar authentication. Aadhaar enabled payments have reached over 40 crore monthly transactions, according to the latest statement made by Saurabh Garg, CEO, UIDAI.
Garg claimed that over five crore Aadhaar authentications are taking place per day and over 40 crore last-mile banking transactions are being done every month through Aadhaar-enabled Payment System (AePS).
Speaking at the 16th edition of India Digital Summit 2022, organized by IAMAI, he said that the numbers are beyond five crores when we take into account offline authentication, he said, “ We wanted anytime, anywhere authentication capabilities…For people who don’t want to use online authentication facility, we have brought in the offline verification system and given it a legal basis. The offline verification is free for anyone to use. Aadhaar is a public infrastructure and the goal is how we can make it accessible to all at nominal rates or free. Currently, more than 700 welfare schemes are using Aadhaar infrastructure.”
“On the payments side, we have the Aadhaar-enabled Payment System for the last mile banking systems where the number is expanding rapidly. AePS has served the country well during the Covid period. Over 40 crore last-mile banking transactions are being done every month on the AePS system through 50 lakhs micro-ATMs,” he added.
He further reassured that for individual residents Aadhaar authentication is free and will always remain free. Recently, UIDAI had slashed the price for authentication to Rs 3 from Rs 20 per instance to enable entities to leverage their infrastructure for better services and benefits.
Talking about Aadhaar 2.0, Garg mentioned that it will ensure faster automated biometric matching solutions, with a primary focus on the security of the ecosystem. He said that the authority is exploring possibilities for the usage of blockchain, quantum computing.
“We are looking at what blockchain has to offer, whether blockchain can be utilised in any manner for making decentralized-level solutions, it’s on the horizon. Cost-effective but secure Aadhaar data wall solutions, confidential computing, as a technology how we can use in authentication, are some of the possibilities we are exploring. In quantum computing, we need to look at whether there are quantum resilient security solutions.”
Garg further claimed that UIDAI has a robust legal framework around Aadhaar, the Data Protection Act will further strengthen the framework and so, there’s a lot of interest. Privacy concerns, data security is of paramount significance.
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