New Delhi: Union minister KJ Alphons on Sunday weighed in on the Aadhaar versus Right to Privacy debate, as concerns over data safety spiked following the Cambridge Analytica's unauthorised use of Facebook data in US elections, and reports of Aadhaar data being open to misuse owing to fresh security lapses. As Unique Identification Authority UIDAI denied any security breach, Mr Alphons -- the junior minister for Electronics and Information Technology departments -- took a dig at activists who question the validity of Aadhaar and want to rein in the mandatory linking of the Unique Identity number to a range of services.
- KJ Alphons took a dig at activists questioning the validity of Aadhaar
- He said people have problem only when their government asks them for data
- Concerns over data safety spiked after the Facebook data breach scandal
People have a problem only when "your own government" asks for data, Mr Alphons said.
"I filled up to 10 pages for US Visa form. We have absolutely no problem giving our fingerprints and getting body naked before the white man at all," Mr Alphons said. "When your own government asks for your name and address, there is a massive revolution, saying it is an intrusion of privacy".
The Supreme Court, where activists have challenged Aadhaar, has indefinitely put on hold its mandatory linking to all services except government welfare schemes.
Calling the report "baseless", the Unique Identification Authority said had it been true also, it has "nothing to do with the security of UIDAI's Aadhaar database".
For more than a year, the UIDAI, which collected biometric, demographic and financial data of 1.2 billion Indians, has been fighting claims of data leakage. Last week, its chief Ajay Bhushan Pandey told the Supreme Court that Aadhaar data has been secured by a 2048-bit encryption key that will take a supercomputer more than the age of universe, or over 13 billion years, to crack.