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Privacy of traffic violators compromised on government platforms: Report

Personal data of people who violated traffic rules was easily accessible, via vehicle numbers, to the general public on government websites such as those of the Delhi Traffic Police and echallan.parivahan.gov.in (operated by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways), as per a report by Hindustan Times published on January 27. Details such as name, address, phone numbers etc. were reportedly available from the government-run platforms for traffic law enforcement. MediaNama checked today and while we could not confirm if Delhi Traffic Police has fixed the loophole on their webpage, it seems that the e-challan platform has plugged their loophole by asking additional information, such as chassis number, from those seeking details. We have reached out to both e-challan and Delhi Traffic Police seeking more details on the developments.

Challan data available on Delhi Traffic Police’s website: To access details such as the date and location of a traffic offence, the image of the vehicle (often with the owner visible), etc., one only needed to submit the vehicle number on the Delhi Traffic Police website, Hindustan Times reported. The website has the following details of any such traffic violator: Notice number, vehicle number, offence date, offence at, image, amount, notice, payment and verification. The images are those captured by speed cameras, traffic policemen and those received through complaints on social media platforms. According to Hindustan Times, it was able to access 60,000 challans on the Delhi Traffic Police website.

Delhi Traffic Police

Screenshot of the webpage to view pending notices – Delhi Traffic Police

Parivahan website shared details including name, address, mobile number: As per the reportechallan.parivahan.gov.in was also disclosing personal details of traffic violators although these were different from the ones accessible through the Delhi Traffic Police website. Names, residential address and phone numbers of vehicle owners could be accessed just by entering the vehicle number in the e-challan website. We checked the platform today and an extra layer of security has been added where users now have to also enter a chassis number or engine number apart from the vehicle number to get details.

We have reached out to the teams of the e-challan platform and DTP seeking clarification on whether or not they were aware of this lapse of security and how they plan on dealing with it.

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