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Privacy International raises concerns over IndiaStack & UPI for establishing financial identity

Privacy International, an international organization which advocates the right to privacy, has raised concerns and criticized IndiaStack, Aadhaar eKYC, and the Unified Payments Interface (UPI). To recap, IndiaStack is a set of software APIs which includes Aadhaar Auth, eKYC, eSign, DigiLocker, GST Network and the UPI, which is crucial for the government’s Digital India programme. In a report titled "Fintech: Privacy and Identity in the New Data-Intensive Financial Sector", Privacy International examines the role of IndiaStack, eKYC, and the UPI in building a financial identity by fintech companies and the impact it would have on a person's privacy. "We urgently need a critical analysis of identity in the financial services industry. It is this industry that is producing many of the most interesting developments in the field of identity. These developments have consequences for privacy, both in terms of the increased intrusion of the data feeding into identities as well as the consequences these identities have for privacy. This means that a focus on this emerging sector is particularly informative and valuable," the report mentioned. The report took notice of two major software layers in the IndiaStack while creating a financial identity:  Aadhaar KYC and the UPI. It took notice of Aadhaar e-KYC played in the Jan Dhan financial inclusion programme. "It is important to understand how Aadhaar creates this financial inclusion: by the creation of vast amounts of personally-identifiable data. As the former chairman of the UIDAI, and the “father of Aadhaar” Nandan Nilekani puts it, India will go “from being data poor to data…

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