ISLAMABAD: In a significant development towards protecting the privacy of citizen’s personal data, the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) has rolled out ‘Ijazat Aap Ki’ (your permission) service, a revolutionary initiative that puts citizens in charge of their personal data.

This cutting-edge service will enable citizens to give their consent before verification of CNICs, ensuring that their sensitive data is protected and secure at all times.

Nadra Chairman Tariq Malik, while launching the service, said the authority guaranteed the confidentiality of citizens’ data by taking effective measures to protect it.

“Now, by giving citizens real and effective ownership and restricting unauthorised access, the authority has taken an unprecedented step. Introducing a multi-layered control mechanism is a testament to Nadra’s dedication to graduate ID management from traditional security protocols to a digital consent regime,” Mr Malik said.

He said that consent management was a digital mechanism in line with his vision to protect citizens’ privacy and strengthen data security.

“Your data is your personal property, and just like your physical property, citizens are from now onwards empowered to control access and protect against misuse or its unwarranted use,” Mr Malik said.

“We are moving from a world where data is used against people to a digital realm where data is used to empower the citizens and give ownership rights of their own data. Citizen’s data is not for sale, it is a valuable asset, and Nadra protects it passionately. Informed consent will be required from citizens to use personal data by a product or service providers from now on,” said the Nadra chairman.

From March 2, all verification transactions will require a six-digit passcode sent to the citizen’s registered mobile number to seek their consent to proceed with data sharing. The pin number will be presented for authentication and will be deemed as the citizen’s consent to get his/her ID number verification from Nadra.

Nadra collects citizen’s mobile numbers at the time of registration for the ID card. The authority has also launched an SMS service 8009, enabling people to enroll their mobile number. Citizens can send a text message containing their 13-digit ID card number on the short code 8009 to enroll their mobile number with Nadra. In response, Nadra will send a confirmation message in case the enrollment is successful.

Mr Malik further emphasised the need for citizens to remain vigilant in protecting their personal information and urged them to take all necessary precautions to prevent identity theft and fraud.

By keeping their mobile numbers updated with Nadra and being cautious about sharing their personal information, citizens can play a vital role in safeguarding their data privacy and preventing unauthorised access to their sensitive information.

Published in Dawn, March 3rd, 2023

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