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Indian Telecom Authority Issues Challenge

The head of the Telecom Authority of India, TRAI, issued a public challenge that he may later regret.  India has been making a big push with their new Universal ID program called Aadhaar.  Under Aadhaar, every Indian citizen will be assigned an identification number which will be directly tied to other sensitive data such as biometrics, bank accounts, email IDs, and other sensitive details and will be required for most aspects of life–including getting a SIM card for a cell phone.  Many throughout India are against the idea from the aspect of it feeling like the government would have too much insight into private citizen’s lives. Others are against the new system out of fear of their information being too available to hackers.  The Indian government has not had a good record of protecting databases or systems from hackers.  In an attempt to show trust in the system and the government’s ability to protect the data, the head  of TRAI has challenged anyone to hack his personal data through the new system.  Given India’s track record with protecting data, he will probably end up later regretting that decision.