What is Aadhaar Virtual ID and How to Generate it

Aadhaar Card is the unique identification system introduced by the government of India a few years back with the purpose to uniquely identify every citizen of the country and link everyone to a central database. Ever since the introduction of Aadhaar, the government has been continuously working on improving it. The latest upgrade to this project has been introduced in the form of Aadhaar Virtual ID. Wondering what it is and how to generate one? Continue reading to find out.

What is Aadhaar Virtual ID?

Aadhaar Virtual Id or the VID is a temporary 16-digit random number which is associated with the Aadhaar number of a particular person and can be used for verification at various places, same as the Aadhaar card. The system was introduced in early 2018 with the tagline – VID Another Aadhaar. It is particularly useful when you do not want to share your 12-digit Aadhaar number with just anyone, as the VID does not reveal or cannot be used to produce the linked Aadhaar number.

The VID contains only the limited KYC information and access that can be used for verification purposes without having to provide the complete details of the Aadhaar card of a person.
This is a (temporary) digital ID and can be produced many times for multiple transactions. This is why it is safer to use. And since it is directly linked with your Aadhaar, it will work the same way.
In a way, the virtual ID is also a unique ID number, as no two parallel VIDs can exist for the same Aadhaar number. As soon as you create a new VID for your Aadhaar, the older one automatically expires.

The validity of the VID is minimum one day. You can generate a new one again only after 24 hours of generating the previous one. The VID once generated is valid until a new one is re-generated. There is no expiry time defined for it.

The Aadhaar virtual ID works as an alternative to the Aadhaar number, and it is compulsory for every retailer in India to accept it for the purpose.

What is the use/purpose of the VID?

The virtual id can be temporarily used, in place of the Aadhaar number, for the purpose of authentication and verification. The main purpose of the introduction of the VID was to enhance the security of the Aadhaar system. Since Aadhaar contains a lot of personal details including your account and PAN details, you may not feel safe to provide your unique 12-digit Aadhaar number to just anyone for verification or other purposes. This is where the VID can be used. It fulfills the purpose without revealing the details of your unique biometric ID to the receiver.

The VID can be used for eKYC and other related services. The service providers will need a specific application for the verification of a VID. The VID can also be used for the following services, in place of the Aadhaar number.

  • Opening a bank account
  • Tatkal passport application
  • Government subsidies
  • New insurance policy purchase

How to generate an Aadhaar Virtual ID?

The VID can be generated in the following two ways:

  1. Through UIDAI’s resident portal
  2. Aadhaar mobile app

Generating Aadhaar Virtual ID (VID) on UIDAI’s resident portal

You can use the UIDAI website for generating a VID only if your mobile number is registered with your Aadhaar so that you can receive the OTP (one-time password) for confirmation while generating the VID.

Here’s the step-by-step procedure for generating the VID on the UIDAI portal.

Step 1: Visit the UIDAI website and click on ‘Virtual ID (VID) Generator’ option under ‘Aadhaar Services’ tab.

A new window will open.

Step 2: Enter your Aadhaar number and the security code (captcha) in the fields and click on ‘Send OTP’ button.

The OTP will be sent to your Aadhaar registered mobile number.

Step 3: Enter the OTP in the given field.

Choose from radio button options – Generate VID or Retrieve VID (that you have already generated before). Click on ‘Submit’ button.

The VID will be sent to your registered mobile number.

Generating Aadhaar Virtual ID (VID) on mAadhaar mobile App

If you are a mobile-savvy (like me), you can also use your smartphone to generate the VID. Follow the steps mentioned below.

Step 1: Open mAadhaar app. (Download it from the Google Play Store if you haven’t already got it.)

Click ok to ‘mAadhaar Consent’. Create the password. Enter your Aadhaar number. Verify the OTP sent to your registered mobile number. (For news users)

Step 2: Click on options and open the ‘virtual id’ section.

Step 3: Enter/type any random 16 numbers and click submit.

Your VID is generated. You can use the same for KYC and other Aadhaar verification purposes.

The VID is beneficial for many reasons. It provides limited access to only required information and prevents misuse or leak of important details. It also removes the need to store Aadhaar number or carry your Aadhaar card wherever you go.

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