The government has responded in a statement late night, saying that the Aadhaar system is unreliable due to the country's hot and humid climate. In response to the report, the ministry of Electronics & IT said that the investor service made'sweeping assertions against Aadhaar' without citing any evidence or basis. Aadhaar is the most trusted digital ID in the world and was named by the minister as one of the most trustworthy.
Over 1 billion Indians expressed their confidence in Aadhaar by using it to authenticate themselves over 100 billion times, the government said. Despite the website prominently giving the updated numbers, the statement added. The Unique Identification Authority of India quotes the number of Aadhaars generated as 1.38 billion.
The government said the investor service did not make any attempt to ascertain facts regarding the issues it raised from the authority. It said the report made an 'obvious reference to Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme' when it speaks of service denials for manual labourers through biometric technologies.
The ministry also said that the security and privacy vulnerabilities referred to by the report have been communicated in response to Parliament questions, where Parliament has been categorically informed that until date, no breach has been reported from Aadhaar's database.
The government said that apart from a billion-plus Indians who use Aadhaar, international agencies like the IMF and World Bank have also lauded the role of Aadhaar. Several countries have also engaged with UIDAI to understand how to deploy similar ID systems, the government said.
The G20 New Delhi Declaration welcomed the framework for Digital Public Infrastructure systems and Aadhaar is the foundational DPI of India's stack, it said.
The government's response comes after Moody's said that the Aadhaar system faces obstacles including the burden of establishing authorisation and concerns about biometric reliability. In its report, Moody's said, investors should not ignore the fact that the company is doing a good job.
Can I generate instant PAN using Aadhaar number?