Aadhaar numbers of 89 lakh MGNREGA scheme beneficiaries made public on A.P. portal

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VIJAYAWADA, APR 26,
The Aadhaar numbers of over 89 lakh persons enrolled in the MGNREGA scheme in Andhra Pradesh have been made available in the public domain by the State government.
The numbers were, however, masked hours after Hyderabad-based Internet security researcher Kodali Srinivas flagged the leak over email on Thursday morning.
Under the Benefit Disbursement Portal (BDP) that deals with MGNREGA wages and Social Security Pensions in the State, the names, village, job card numbers and the Aadhaar numbers (UIDs) of as many as 89,38,138 persons who have linked their Aadhaar accounts with the scheme have been placed on the website accessible to all. In all, there are 1.02 crore beneficiaries in the scheme.
The BDP is maintained by AP Online.Not a first
This comes a day after the alleged leak of Aadhaar numbers, caste, bank account numbers and other details of beneficiaries of housing schemes by the State Housing Corporation.After the leak was brought to light by Mr. Srinivas, the authorities removed the Aadhaar numbers and some other personal details of the beneficiaries. The bank account numbers, ration card numbers, caste and other details of over 44.97 lakh people are still available on the website.
“This is a serious violation of privacy of the public. The State government is doing this in the name of transparency but the same can be misused by the political parties, e-commerce aggregators, businessmen and others to draw their strategies,” Mr. Srinivas told The Hindu over the phone. Mr. Srinivas is yet to receive any response from the officials.
“We have ordered an inquiry into the availability of data on Housing Corporation website. We are verifying how it happened,” K. Vijayanand, Principal Secretary (IT) told The Hindu.
However, the higher officials of the IT department are unaware that the Aadhaar details are available on the BDP.
“We have just opened the Andhra Pradesh Cyber Security Operations Centre. It will take another one week time to stabilise everything,” said Mr. Vijayanand, adding that all precautions to not expose public information would be taken by the new centre.

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