GST: Biometric-based Aadhaar authentication for new registrations

The largest biometrics identity system in the world is called Aadhaar, and it was implemented as a universal identity system by the Indian government. Every Indian citizen is given a unique 12-digit ID number that is connected to their biometric information, such as finger prints, iris scans, and facial photos. The goal of this massive effort is to streamline multiple services and advantages by offering a single, verifiable identity.

Biometric Authentication’s Significance

In Aadhaar, biometric authentication is essential for preventing identity theft, assuring that social welfare benefits are received by the right people, and simplifying other bureaucratic procedures. The technology uses biometrics, which are essentially hard to copy or fake, to authenticate identities securely and effectively for a wide range of applications.

GST Council will introduce a phased-in implementation of Aadhaar authentication for GST registration through biometrics

The GST Council of India has decided to gradually roll out biometric-based Aadhaar identification for GST registration throughout the nation in an effort to address the ongoing problem of false invoices. This planned action intends to improve the security and accuracy of the GST registration procedure by using innovative biometric technology to confirm the applicants’ identities. This declaration was made during the 53rd GST Council meeting, which took place in New Delhi on June 22, 2024.

Read Also: GST Update: Weekly Goods and Service Tax latest News – 2024

Important Aspects of the Launch

  • Technology and Implementation: The progressive roll-out will gradually cover all new GST registrations after starting with high-risk applicants. Biometric information, including as fingerprint and iris scans, would be collected as part of the verification procedure and cross-checked with Aadhaar records to confirm the applicants’ legitimacy. By adding a strong layer of verification, this interface with the Aadhaar system makes it much more difficult for fraudulent businesses to manipulate the registration process.
  • Managing False Invoicing: False invoicing has been a major problem, costing the government a lot of money in lost income. In order to avoid paying taxes, fraudulent organizations create fake invoices and claim excessive input tax credits. The GST Council wants to close these gaps by using biometric-based authentication, which will guarantee that only trustworthy businesses can register and use the GST system. It is anticipated that this approach will reduce tax evasion and strengthen the integrity of the GST system.
  • Pilot Projects and National Expansion: The use of biometric authentication is the result of the technology’s successful pilot programs in Gujarat and Puducherry, as well as an Andhra Pradesh research that showed a significant decrease in false invoices. The technology was improved for a national roll-out thanks to the insightful information these pilots offered about the implementation process. The staged approach ensures a more seamless transition by allowing for changes and improvements based on preliminary feedback.
Read Also: Mandatory Biometric Verification at GST Service Centers keeps bogus applicants away

Biometric Data Types Used in Aadhaar

  • Scanning Fingerprints

    One of the principal biometric techniques employed in Aadhaar is fingerprint scanning. Since each person’s fingerprint pattern is distinct, fingerprints are a great option for safe identification. Enrollment centers with high-resolution scanners are used to collect this data, which is then encrypted and kept in a central database.

  • Recognition of Iris

    Iris recognition technology examines the random patterns observable within each person’s colored eye ring. Each person, including twins, has a unique set of incredibly complicated patterns. This technique improves the accuracy and security of the Aadhaar authentication procedure.

  • Identification by Face

    In addition, multiple facial traits are analyzed using facial recognition technologies. This increases authentication process robustness and improves inclusivity for those who may have worn fingerprints or had issues with iris scans for various reasons.

Framework Technological

Biometric data collection and Archiving

Biometric information is obtained during Aadhaar enrollment with the use of specialized equipment compliant with the guidelines established by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI). After passing quality checks to guarantee accuracy, the data is safely encrypted and kept in a central database to prevent unauthorised access.

Procedure for Authentication

The person’s biometric information is taken and transmitted to the UIDAI server in an encrypted format when authentication is necessary. Next, the data is compared by the server with the records that are kept. When the biometric information matches, authentication is verified, allowing for quick and safe service access.

Read Also:Online gaming firms likely to be left in the lurch at GST Council meet

Advantages of biometric verification

  • Increased Safety

The security of personal and national data has been greatly increased by biometric authentication via Aadhaar. Because biometric identifiers, like fingerprints and iris patterns, are unique, impersonators find it very difficult to obtain or exploit the identity of another individual. For instance, because government subsidy programs only award payments following a beneficiary’s successful biometric identification, fraud has drastically decreased.

  • Accessible

Identity verification has become more efficient and user-friendly with the use of biometrics. A fast biometric scan now suffices in place of carrying various kinds of identification for citizens. This is especially helpful in remote and rural areas where consumers may access financial services without traditional bank accounts thanks to Aadhaar-linked biometric authentication.

  • Decrease in Deception

Several types of fraud have been reduced by the direct connection of biometric information with Aadhaar numbers, especially in the public sector. The theft of money has been stopped in several instances because of biometric authentication. For example, according to a 2019 research, the Indian government saved almost INR 90,000 crore over the course of five years by using Aadhaar verification to remove ghost entries from beneficiary lists for various government projects.

Read Also:GST Council Meeting on June 22: Key issues to be considered

Difficulties and Concerns

  • Issues Regarding Privacy

    The gathering and storing of biometric data presents serious privacy issues in spite of its advantages. One major concern is the possibility of unauthorised spying and data breaches. These concerns were recognized in the 2018 Supreme Court ruling on Aadhaar, which emphasized the necessity of strong data protection legislation to protect personal information.

  • Technological Errors

    Since biometric systems are not perfect, they can include errors that prevent legitimate users from accessing services, such as incorrect rejections or acceptances. The dependability of biometric authentication can also be impacted by environmental variables, poor scanners, or damaged biometrics (such as scarred fingerprints).

  • A Legal and Ethical Perspective

    In India, the laws governing biometric data are currently being developed. The ethical implications of requiring biometric data collecting are still being discussed; in particular, issues with consent and data misuse are major points of dispute.

Read Also:GST Council to clarify taxability of ESOPs, start-ups and MNCs to benefit

Effects on the Community

  • Effects on Public Sector Services

    In India, Aadhaar has completely changed how government services are provided. The implementation of a unique identification for each citizen has resulted in simpler procedures and less bureaucratic overhead. For example, the direct transfer of social welfare benefits, such as LPG subsidies, to the bank accounts of the recipients has been expedited by Aadhaar-linked services.

  • Effect on Access to Finances

    Financial inclusion has benefited greatly from Aadhaar, especially for those who are underbanked. People may now perform financial transactions using only their Aadhaar number and biometric data, avoiding the need for significant banking documentation, due to the biometric-enabled Aadhaar Payment System (APS). In rural regions, this has had a particularly significant impact.

  • Influence on Day-to-Day Living

    The use of Aadhaar has made life easier for Indian citizens. Aadhaar has emerged as a key component of identity verification for a variety of activities, from purchasing a new mobile phone plan to getting COVID-19 vaccine registrations.


The integration of biometric technologies into the Aadhaar system is an important move in terms of governance and technology. Although there are many advantages, there are also issues that must be resolved in order to respect people’s rights and privacy.

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