Wikileaks: US closely watching the UID program

A Wikileaks cable released on the 23rd of April shows the US State Department's curiosity in India's UID program and a set of questions that they want answered.

In a Wikileaks cable that has surfaced the US State department seems to have a specific set of questions that they are interested in knowing about India's Unique identification program. Creating a biometric database of the world's largest democracy is a project that would interest a lot of international government agencies. The questions that the cable lists are quite generic and some information is public.

The information sought by US authorities:

A) (SBU) PLEASE REPORT ON THE PROGRESS OR STATUS OF THE INDIAN BIOMETRIC ID CARD'S DEVELOPMENT AND DEPLOYMENT, TO THE EXTENT THIS INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE.

B) (SBU) WHAT IS INDIA'S STRATEGIC PLAN FOR UTILIZING BIOMETRIC ID CARD TECHNOLOGY IN THE MILITARY, LAW ENFORCEMENT, AND PRIVATE SECTORS?

C) (SBU) WHICH GOVERNMENT AGENCIES WILL BE RESPONSIBLE FOR OVERSEEING THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE NATIONAL ID CARD BIOMETRIC COLLECTION STRATEGY?

D) (SBU) HOW DO AUTHORITIES PLAN TO UTILIZE THE BIOMETRIC ID CARD AT INDIA'S BORDERS, PORTS, AND AIRPORTS?

E) (SBU) WHICH FOREIGN COUNTRIES AND/OR CORPORATIONS ARE ASSISTING IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE ID CARD? WHICH BIOMETRIC SYSTEMS (I.E. FINGERPRINTS, FACIAL RECOGNITION, IRIS SCAN, ETC.) WILL BE INCORPORATED INTO THE CARD?

F) (SBU) WHAT PROMPTED DEVELOPMENT OF THE ID CARD?

G) (SBU) WHICH COMPANY IS PROVIDING THE BIOMETRIC COLLECTION DEVICES, STORAGE, AND MATCHING DATABASE EQUIPMENT? PLEASE PROVIDE THE NAME, MODEL, AND VERSION OF THE BIOMETRIC COLLECTION DEVICES USED FOR THE ID CARD, IF AVAILABLE.

H) (SBU) WHICH ORGANIZATIONS/AGENCIES WITHIN INDIA WILL HAVE ACCESS TO INFORMATION GATHERED BY THE BIOMETRIC ID CARD COLLECTION DEVICES?

I) (SBU) WHAT SYSTEMS, DATABASES, OR PORTALS WILL THE NAMED BIOMETRIC ID CARD COLLECTION DEVICES IN INDIA COMMUNICATE WITH?

J) (SBU) WILL THE ID CARD BE ACCEPTED FOR PASSPORT APPLICATIONS?

K) (SBU) WHAT TYPES OF ANTI-FRAUD MEASURES DO INDIAN AUTHORITIES PLAN TO INCORPORATE IN THE ISSUANCE PROCESS?

L) (SBU) WHAT SECURITY FEATURES ARE PLANNED FOR THE ID CARD? WILL THE CARD BE ICAO COMPLIANT AND WILL IT USE ANY ENCRYPTION? PLEASE REPORT ON ANY EFFORTS TO "SPOOF" OR DEFEAT BIOMETRIC ENROLLMENT, SUCH AS FINGERPRINT ALTERATION.

In an earlier post I wrote about some of the companies involved in the UID project and the equipment they will be providing.

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