The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has added yet another layer of security to make the biometric identity of India, better known as Aadhaar – facial recognition to authenticate the identity alongside fingerprints, iris and OTP authentication.

Named as ‘Face Authentication’, the new face recognition feature introduced by the UIDAI will add an extra strong layer of security in a bid to make the Aadhaar card and its usage more secure and reliable. The new face recognition feature will not only add a layer of security but will also facilitate people who are facing problems in other verification options like fingerprints, iris, and one-time-password (OTP). So this will especially help the people who were having hard time verifying their identity as a result of worn-out fingerprints due to old age or tough jobs.

Facial recognition will be used in ‘fusion’ with existing authentication modes like the fingerprint, iris or OTP authentication – which is supposed to add another ‘much-needed’ layer of security. The face authentication feature will be introduced by the UIDAI from July. For collecting the facial reference data, the photograph captured during Aadhaar registration can be used. And since facial authentication does not need a special hardware, it can be done via mobile or laptop by authentication agencies. But the authority will work with biometric device providers to integrate face modality into the certified registered devices.

The UIDAI might also provide special standalone Registered Device (RD) service to integrate facial recognition more easily, if needed. This device would also have a software development kit to enable the security measure. About the device, the UIDAI says, “Face image with liveness detection and that can be used as an additional factor to increase security”. So this doesn’t mean you will be required to visit an Aadhaar centre again for authentication of face recognition details.