A digital locker is another feather in the hat of Digital India, which strives to bring internet connectivity to the doorstep of every Indian. It is an initiative of Department of Electronics and Information Technology, Government of India. It will enable the user to save one’s important documents electronically thereby ensuring security from theft or loss and also exemption from physical use of documents. This is a huge step by Government of India to reduce the use of paper and enhance the environment. It can be accessed at www.digitallocker.gov.in
Purpose of Digital Locker
The initiative is a commendable way to store and send documents in a secure way. The government has designed a foolproof mechanism to ensure security by linking the access to digital lockers to Aadhaar number. The minimum requirement to sign up for DigiLocker is thus to have one’s phone number registered with Aadhaar. As one signs up, one is asked for Aadhaar number, post which a One-Time Password (OTP) is generated and sent to the registered mobile number and email id. This OTP has a lifetime of 30 minutes only. One has to enter the OTP within the stipulated time under ‘Validate OTP’ button to complete the login procedure. The login has been deliberately routed via mobile number/email to ensure a second level of verification.
Advantages of Digital Locker
Digital Locker will have an initial storage of 10MB which in the first phase. It is expected to be stretched to 1 GB in its next version. This will allow one to upload a good number of documents in an online repository. These documents can also be shared electronically with the concerned authorities. An e-sign facility will also be activated to enable and validate digital signatures on critical documents. This will further add to the authenticity quotient and eliminate the usage of fake documents. The minimised used of paper and physical space will considerably reduce overhead charges of the government and critical files/documents will now be accessed with enhanced ease. The risk of document leak or any kind of physical damage is also eliminated. Moreover, the user will be able to browse through his information anytime, anywhere. Digital lockers will also have a properly structured and a standardised document format (XML format) which will enable easy uploading and sharing of documents to various departments. The sharing will be possible only with registered agencies or departments. A list of agencies which issue e-documents and a list of agencies which have accessed them will be provided.
Uploading the documents
Government of India has worked hard to provide ease of use. The documents can be uploaded very conveniently under respective sections namely-‘My Profile’ and ‘My Certificates’. One can select which document to upload in a drop-down list and fill in the requisite details. The files can be uploaded from the computer only in a few supported formats.
It is thus a laudable step by Government of India for making Digital India become a reality and empower the citizens. It is inviting feedback from users since the launch of beta version till April 2015. The official authenticity of e-documents will considerably reduce chances of fraud and bring India closer to the developed nations.