Aadhaar: Failure rate is 8.54 percent for Iris, 6 percent for finger print, UIDAI [Read Response]

Aadhaar: Failure rate is 8.54 percent for Iris, 6 percent for finger print, UIDAI [Read Response]

Murali Krishnan

The Chief Executive Officer of UIDAI submitted his response to the questions raised by petitioners in the Aadhaar case in Supreme Court.

The response by the CEO divulges many interesting contours of Aadhaar.

The very first question was on authentication failures. According to UIDAI, failure rate of IRIS scan is 8.54 percent while that of finger print is 6 percent.

However, UIDAI has clarified in its response that authentication failures do not mean exclusion or denial from subsidies, benefits or services since the ‘Requesting Entities’ are obliged under the law to provide for ‘exception handling mechanisms’.

On whether a school can enrol a child for Aadhaar without parental consent, UIDAI has stated that the same is not permissible.

School officials, if permitted to act as ‘introducer’ can enrol only when there is a parental consent to enrol.”

However, a child, once he attains majority, cannot opt out of or revoke consent for Aadhaar.

On the query regarding the status of 49,000 blacklisted enrolment operators and the number of enrolments done by them, the UIDAI has not given a specific answer, instead stating,

“UIDAI has a policy to enforce the process guicielines and data quality check during the enrolment process. 100% of the enrolment done by operators undergoes a quality assurance check, wherein every enrolment passes through a human eye. Any Aadhaar enrolment found to be contrary to the UIDAI process’ the enrolment itself gets rejected and Aadhaar is not generated. The resident is advised to re-enrol.

Once an operator is blacklisted or suspended, further enrolments cannot be carried out by him during the time the order of blacklisting/suspension is valid”

The total number of bio-metric de-duplication rejections that have taken place are 6.91 crore as on March 21, 2018.

“This figure merely pertains to the number of applications which have been identified by the Aadhaar de-duplication system as having matching biometrics to an existing Aadhaar number holder. The biometric de-duplication system is designed to identify as duplicate those cases where any one of the biometrics (ten fingers and two irises) match. However, very often it is found that all the biometrics match. It is highly improbable for the biometrics to match unless the same person has applied again.”

Regarding whether biometric authentication is based on a probabilistic match, the UIDAI has stated that it is based on 1:1 matching and therefore, not probabilistic.

“If biometrics are captured well it will lead to successful authentication. If biometrics are not well captured during authentication or an impostor tries authentication, it will lead to authentication failure. Aadhaar Proof of Concept studies show that a vast majority of residents (> 98%) can successfully authenticate using biometric modalities such fingerprints and/or iris.”

Read the full response below.

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