Facial Authentication Technology for EPS Pensioners

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Source-This post on Facial Authentication Technology for EPS Pensioners has been created based on the article “Use of Facial Authentication Technology by the EPS pensioners for Digital Life Certificate Submission” published in “PIB” on 8 June 2024.

Why in News?

Recently, Facial Authentication Technology has been introduced for EPS Pensioners

About Facial Authentication Technology for EPS Pensioners

1. The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) serves over 78 lakh pensioners who are required to submit an annual life certificate to continue receiving their pension.

2. Implementation of Digital Life Certificate (DLC): In 2015, EPFO introduced the Digital Life Certificate allowing pensioners to submit their certificates via biometric authentication, which initially required visiting a facility equipped with the necessary technology.

3.  In July 2022, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) and the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) developed Face Authentication Technology.

EPFO adopted this and this enabled pensioners to submit their life certificates from home using any Android smartphone.

4. Pensioners can verify their identity through a facial scan using their smartphone camera, which compares the scan against UIDAI’s Aadhaar database. This method eliminates the need for physical visits to banks or post offices.

5. During the 2022-23 fiscal year, 2.1 lakh pensioners used FAT for their DLCs. This number increased to 6.6 lakh in 2023-24, marking a 200% growth in usage. FAT-based DLCs accounted for about 10% of all DLCs received last year, with around 60 lakh DLCs submitted in total.

6. Application Requirements: Pensioners need to install two apps: “Aadhaar Face RD” and “Jeevan Pramaan”. Authentication is performed via Aadhaar-linked mobile numbers, with detailed guidelines provided within the apps to facilitate a successful scan.

7. Promotional and Support Initiatives: Detailed instructions were disseminated to all field offices to popularize the new method. The EPFO also conducts regular sessions at the ‘Nidhi Apke Nikat’ programme across all districts to educate pensioners about the technology.

About Facial Recognition technology

1. About: Facial recognition technology identifies or verifies a person using an image, video, or any audiovisual element of their face. It is a method of biometric identification that uses facial and head measurements to authenticate identity.

2. How it Works: It captures unique biometric data of each person’s face and facial expressions. It uses the collected data to identify, verify, and authenticate individuals.

Benefits of Facial Recognition

i) It offers fast and smooth remote identity verification.

ii) It provides a unique, smooth, and fast user experience, reducing the need for in-person visits or video conferences.

iii) Each face has unique and inimitable characteristics which enhances security through biometric comparison.

iv) It is recognized as a standard for remote identity verification for high-risk operations, such as opening bank accounts and signing contracts.

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