Aadhaar by Numbers

by Prasad Krishna last modified Sep 11, 2016 04:36 PM
Sunil Abraham will be addressing a public seminar at an event organized by National Institute of Public Finance and Policy (NIPFP) in New Delhi on Friday, April 29, 2016.

This talk will reflect on several aspects of the Aadhaar project from a technical perspective. First, there will be a reflection on biometrics as a unique, identification and authentication technology. Second, there will be a critique of open washing by the UIDAI through their adoption of free software and open standards and finally there will be an analysis of alternative technical solutions and architecture which will allow India to harvest the benefits of identity management without the harms and risks of centralized biometrics.

Sunil Abraham

Sunil Abraham (an Ashoka Fellow) is the executive director of the Centre for Internet and Society (CIS), Bangalore/New Delhi. CIS is a 7 year old policy and academic research organisation that focuses on accessibility, access to knowledge, internet governance and  telecommunications. He is also the founder and director of Mahiti, a 17 year old social enterprise that aims to reduce the cost and complexity of ICTs for the voluntary sector by using free software. Starting 2004, for 3 years, Sunil also managed the International Open Source Network, a project of UNDP's APDIP, serving 42 countries in the Asia-Pacific region.  Sunil currently serves on the advisory boards of OSF – Information Programme, Mahiti and Samvada.


The talk reflected on several aspects of the Aadhaar project from a technical perspective. First, there is a reflection on biometrics as a unique, identification and authentication technology. Second, there is a critique of open washing by the UIDAI through their adoption of free software and open standards and finally there is an analysis of alternative technical solutions and architecture which will allow India to harvest the benefits of identity management without the harms and risks of centralized biometrics.

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