New Delhi: The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) on Tuesday advised people to refrain from publicly putting their Aadhaar numbers on the internet and social media and posing challenges to others.
The advisory comes days after TRAI chief RS Sharma shared his 12-digit Aadhaar number on Twitter and dared anyone to misuse it.
"This advisory has come from UIDAI with reference to some news items appearing on social media reporting few persons publicly posting their Aadhaar numbers on internet and social media and posing challenges to others," UIDAI said in a statement.
"Such activities are uncalled for and should be refrained as these are not in accordance with the law. Aadhaar is a unique identity which can be authenticated to prove one's identity for various services, benefits and subsidies. UIDAI in its regular media campaigns have been consistently making people aware not to display or publish or share their Aadhaar number in public domain," the advisory added.
UIDAI further emphasised that Aadhaar number is personally sensitive information like bank account number, passport number, PAN number, etc., which should be strictly shared only for a legitimate use or for establishing identity.
"Also, as per the Aadhaar Act, 2016 and IT (Reasonable Security Practices and Procedures and sensitive Personal Data or Information) Rules, 2011 and Justice Srikrishna's proposed Data Protection Bill, personally sensitive information should not be published or shared publicly. Indiscriminate and unwanted publication of any personally sensitive information whether Aadhaar or any other, may render the concerned person vulnerable and, therefore, should be avoided," the statement read.
UIDAI also informed in its advisory that doing Aadhaar authentication through somebody else's Aadhaar number or using someone else's Aadhaar number for any purpose may amount to impersonation and thereby a criminal offence under the Aadhaar Act and Indian Penal Code (IPC).
"Any person indulging in such acts or abetting or inciting others to do so makes themselves liable for prosecution and penal action under the law. Therefore people should refrain from such acts," it added.