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India's Unique ID and OpenID

Public vision posted on Wed, 16 Sep 2009 by iapain

I think this blog is inappropriate for discussing, India and UID project (Unique Identification Number). I recently had look at Mr. Nadan interview on NDTV about this project, despite his public saying it seems people are still confused with “ID Card” and “Unique Identification Number”. Again I’ll repeat UID is NOT an ID Card its just an identification number which will go to your various documents like Birth certificate, voter ID card, Pan Card etc.

Concept of national ID is not new US have got defacto SSN (Social Security Number), in Poland there is PESEL (personal identification number) which drastically reduce paper work, for example In India, when you go to open a bank account they ask you to bring an “identity proof” ha! I need to prove who I am. It’s rediculous but thats the way things works in India. If you’re aware how to twists paper work then you can even get 10 credit cards in India.

Idea of UID is a watchdog on citizen activities and bring poor people a bit near. Now, how it’s going to help poor people, though I was quite skeptic initially that its going to benefit poor and as I can see here in Europe, I think it’d really help poor if its easy to get this number. The fundamental advantage of UID is that you don’t have to prove who you are to various institution e.g banks, tax authorities, immigration authorities etc.

Estonia is first country which connected its UniqueID and ID cards to an OpenID. For those who are not aware of OpenID (<span class="http-markup"><a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenID" rel="nofollow">http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenID</a></span> ) its an authorization process specially for web but can be extended to other application. Let me explain you in simple words say you have a Gmail account and all Gmail Accounts have issued a unique ID which is a URL (https://www.google.com/accounts/o8/ud) so now if you comes to a website which accepts OpenID and if you provide your uniqueID URL then it’ll authenticate you from OpenID provider in this case Google.

It would be great if India UniqueID will be OpenID enabled. Estonia has successfully implemented nationalID – UniqueID connection. If you are XYZ ABC with an Estonian UID 42004010123456 then your OpenID is <span class="http-markup"><a href="https://openid.ee/e/xyz.abc.42004010123456" rel="nofollow">https://openid.ee/e/xyz.abc.42004010123456</a></span> (https://openid.ee/e/name.surname.uid)

Biometric is really cool and we should do in this way but more things are happening around us, in order to bring egovernence to common citizen OpenID is an open platform for both government and non government world. I hope Mr. Nandan have already thought about it.

(This is an imported feed item. You can read the original item at <span class="http-markup"><a href="http://whereisdeepak.wordpress.com/2009/09/16/india-and-unique-identification-number/" rel="nofollow">http://whereisdeepak.wordpress.com/2009/09/16/india-and-unique-identification-number/</a></span>)

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    I think idea is to optionally use unique id as openid if you want ofcourse, It will ease identity check for egovernence things for example if you want to get passport you may apply online you don't need any smart card reader to read your PKI etc.

    - iapain (iapain) 7 years, 1 month ago (Permalink)

    Hm, are you sure it's a good thing to have a unique identification for everyone? It empowers authorities to track people and usually means that every institution in the state can share data on every person. This is horror for privacy and a major step towards totalitarian regimes. Combining it with OpenID even extends the reach of that monitoring into the internet. Oh well, but hooray the technical possibilities.

    - stefan (Stefan) 7 years, 1 month ago (Permalink)