Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced today that e-passports with embedded chips will be rolled out in India in 2022-2023. Earlier, Sanjay Bhattacharya, Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs, took to Twitter to announce that India would before long get e-passports with secure biometric information. He had mentioned that e-passports would be as per the principles of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
The e-passports will serve the same purpose as conventional passports however will come with embedded chips and cutting-edge technology, Sitharaman said during her Budget Speech. The e-passports would contain microchips that would have significant security information stored in them. India currently issues just printed passports to users, however, e-passports are available in countries including the US, UK, and Germany.
Bhattacharya had previously revealed that the secret word would contain secure biometric information, it would ensure smooth passage through migration posts all around the world, and the e-passport would be ICAO agreeable. It will be manufactured at India Security Press, Nashik. The External Affairs minister had likewise revealed that India is in chats with the ‘India Security Press’ regarding microchips. “We propose to pursue the manufacture of e-passports on need so a new passport booklet with advanced security features can be rolled out in the near future,” Jaishanker had said.
What is an e-passport?
An e-passport will have the same capacities as a conventional passport yet it will be more secure than a customary passport. That is because the e-passport would contain an electronic chip that will convey the same data as the printed passport.
The microchip would include data, for example, the passport holder’s name, date of birth, and other details. The e-passport would go out to b extremely useful for travelers as it would eliminate the need to remain in long queues before the movement counter. The e-passport could be scanned in minutes as opposed to the actual verification at the movement counter. It will likewise help check the fake passport business as the scammers would think that it is difficult to fiddle with the information recorded on the microchip.
The concept of an e-passport has already been introduced in over 120 countries, including the US, UK, and Germany that already has biometric e-passport systems.
Features of an e-passport
The e-passport will house an inlaid chip that will contain all the personal data of the passport holder. The chip which will be placed on the rear of the passport will come with 64 kilobytes of storage space and an embedded rectangular antenna. The chip will contain information from up to 30 international trips at first. However, in the later stage, the chip is additionally expected to store the picture of the passport holder alongside biometric information like fingerprints. Assuming anyone tries to tamper with the chip, it will result in failure of passport authentication, according to reports.