Indian telcos have been given directed by Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) to collect a two-factor verification process while issuing new SIM cards to customers and one of the factors must include facial recognition to prevent misuse of Aadhaar authentication.
In previous circular UIDAI had asked to ensure facial recognition and click a live photo of new customers before activating new SIM cards.
The face authentication rule will be rolled out in phases and it has been in addition to authentication by fingerprint/OTP/iris. Starting from September 15 the telcos are asked to implement the new rule to at least 10% of total monthly authentication. Provision of fine is set if the telecom operators fail to adhere to the guidelines.
In such cases in which the customers provide virtual aadhaar card (VID, only single factor authentication would be enough like either fingerprint or iris. Face authentication would not be mandatory, but if the fingerprint/iris scans fail to work for whatever the reason, face authentication would be implemented.
Telcos would be sending the face photo captured through face authentication process to the UIDAI.
Before activating a SIM the telcom companies need to verify the live photo of customers with the photo received in e-KYC.