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Aadhaar eKYC can make new mobile connection cost zero, says TRAI

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On Friday, R S Sharma, Trai Chairman said that if the electronic KYC of Aadhaar is implemented then the activation cost of a new mobile connection will virtually become zero. This is possible as with electronic KYC, the authentication will be done digitally.

He further stated that using Aadhaar card will also reduce the transaction cost substantially.

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“If you are taking a mobile connection, currently the cost of activation of a mobile customer is Rs 150 because you have to fill a customer acquisition form (CAF), you have to give paper documents… if you use digital identity authentication, you can fill the customer form, digitally sign it and get your electronic KYC. So, essentially the cost is equal to zero,” Sharma said at the annual growth Net summit in New Delhi.

According to Sharma, the recommendations has already been sent the Department of Telecom (DoT) and the DoT has “apparently” accepted it too. As soon as the norms are finalised by the government, the identity verification using Aadhaar card biometric data will be enabled instantly for a new mobile connection.

He further hoped that the issue of new connections by operators using the Aadhaar card would also speed up the verification process.

Sharma who was earlier appointed as the Department of Electronics and IT (Deity) Secretary and now as the UIDAI Director General said that there is a huge difference between a development of technology and its implementation.

He has earlier recommended to DoT on making the whole process paperless which met with scepticism in some quarters on security issues. Proving his point, he further gave an example about the Peshawar attack in Pakistan where the six terrorists had SIMs issued to a woman.

“Now, what is happening is one person who takes your PAN card is able to give 20 SIMs to different people and if they commit a crime, you will be caught. You are not aware who is using or misusing your PAN card to get the SIMs,” Sharma explained.

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