Aadhaar based ATM (Automated Teller Machine) is not a new story but people are not really aware of the service so we thought to dig into the service, its benefits and how easily it is available.
What is an Aadhaar based ATM?
Aadhaar based ATM is a service which lets you withdraw cash from ATM using your Aadhaar Card number and Aadhaar fingerprint (biometric) instead of your ATM Card or PIN. The service was first tested in April by DCB (Development Co-operative Bank) Bank in Mumbai. Later, the bank expanded its testing to the states of Odisha and Punjab.
Further, in June 2016, DCB launched the service in Bengaluru as well. As of now, only DCB Bank has introduced this services and unfortunately the service is only limited to DCB Bank customers. For those who are not aware, DCB Bank is a new generation private sector bank offering a range of banking products for micro-business, small business, NRIs and individuals.
How does it work?
As mentioned before, limited to only DCB Bank customers, one can easily transact using his/her biometric details instead of a PIN. The is possible only if you have linked your Aadhaar Card to your bank account. The ATM will dispense cash on providing the above-mentioned information.
So you either swap your card or enter the 12-digit Aadhaar number. Further, at the stage of confirming the identity, it will require you to enter you biometric details (fingerprint or iris details) rather than the PIN.
How can it help?
Well, the first major benefit of this service is that it eliminates the need of carrying your ATM cards to withdraw cash. Every now and then, we do lose our ATM cards and the process post that is usually more than a handful for most people . From blocking the lost card to issuing the new one, and a new PIN seperately, it takes time which can be a real pain in situations where you really need cash and an ATM is the only quick way to get it.
Another benefit which can be extracted out of this service is the added amount of security. Your biometric details are any day safer than your ATM PIN. Initially, people were reluctant to use this service with the thought that Aadhaar Card number is not a private affair but here one has to note that it’s not the Aadhaar Card number but the fingerprint or iris details which safeguard your details. SO in effect, the Aadhaar number is just the first of the two factor authentication process which we have when we insert the ATM card and PIN usually.
Still, any new service in a country of 1.25 billion people takes time to gell into peoples lives. Back in June, DCB announced that it will expand the service to all of its 400 ATMs across the country in the next six months and we are yet to get any update on it. In our opinion, this service is a step towards innovation and can really help reduce a lot of issues relating to ATM cash withdrawal. Of course, increased usage is very likely to throw up mistakes in the Aadhaar database too, when it comes to labeling and storage of your correct biometric information.
As of now, we don’t expect this to expand as the country is still reacting to the demonetization of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes. If you happen to live in any of the above-mentioned parts of India and have availed this new service, do let us know your experience.