Biometric identification for over a billion people

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In 2010, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) launched the Aadhaar program, a national identification system which aims to provide all residents of India with a single identity and a digital platform to authenticate themselves at any anytime and anywhere. As India continues on a path of strong economic growth and accelerated development of physical and social infrastructure, this national identification system aims to collect and manage the names, addresses and biometric information of all population, with the aim of creating a society in which every person can enjoy equal access to education, health care, social protection, banking and other public and financial services. The Aadhaar program is essential for building an inclusive nation in India and empowering all its citizens.

Once a person registers in the system, they are given a 12-digit individual identification number or “Aadhaar”. With over 1.3 billion completed registrations, the Aadhaar program is one of the largest national ID systems in the world.

As with any identification system, it must be robust enough to prevent duplicate registrations and prevent people from impersonating others and committing fraud. This is essential to maintain the integrity of the system and people’s trust in it. Moreover, with so many citizens to register, the registration procedure must be as simple, precise and efficient as possible.

This is where NEC makes a valuable contribution. At the center of the Aadhaar program is an unprecedented large-scale biometric system developed by NEC. The system uses several biometric data such as fingerprints, facial images and iris images to distinguish more than 1.3 billion Indian citizens. It also has enormous processing power, with the ability to handle over a million registrations per day by verifying registered biometric information for over a billion people and comparing it to the biometric information of people seeking to register.

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