Almost everyone these days relies heavily on their smartphones to store a plethora of extremely sensitive information. These include things like login credentials, personal data, and even sensitive documents such as travel tickets, which require you to carry around a physical copy in your pockets and risk losing them when on the move. DigiLocker is an online digital locker from the Indian Government, facilitating secure storage and sharing of digital documents. The following are 20 things you may not know about DigiLocker.
1. What is DigiLocker?
The DigiLocker is an ambitious technology project by the Ministry of Electronics and IT in India and is implemented under the Digital India initiative. It is a digital document storage locker, utility, and verification system launched in 2015 and designed to address the insecurities of losing essential data. The web services eliminate the need for carrying original and physical documents for verification, steering the country into a secure digital environment. It allows citizens to store, publish, or access essential documents and files online. DigiLocker also enables you to share information across linked devices or send them via SMS. The web service offers data protection, privacy, and security while contributing towards empowering citizens and bringing extraordinary efficiencies in the Government and citizen interactions. It also provides an online interface for users to order new certificates and documents from different institutions and agencies.
2. How is Digi Locker different from other document storage services?
Several document-storage services are available in the country, but DigiLocker is the only system integrated with government services. It allows you to upload all your crucial documents in a hassle-free process and retrieve them in digitalized formats. It also facilitates sharing of files across different organizations and agencies through a mechanism that verifies their authenticity.
3. The features and functionalities of DigiLocker
The digital locker provides an online account with a 10MB dedicated personal storage space which may be increased to 1GB. It features a simple user interface with a reliable architecture to support standard document formats and allow easy sharing of e-documents across agencies and organizations. Digilocker also enables the electronic signing of documents through the e-sign feature. You can request documents and access the list of requesters that have accessed your files.
4. How can you access DigiLocker?
You can access the DigiLocker service via their website, download a mobile app from your Android or iPhone store, or use the DigiLocker API. The process of creating an account is easy and first. A mobile number is required when signing up on this platform. Alternatively, individuals can register using an Aadhaar number linked to their mobile number. You can either use your credentials (username and password) to login into your DigiLocker account or use your Aadhaar number and get an OTP sent to your mobile number to log in to your account.
5. How to enable your DigiLocker account
To activate your DigiLocker account, you need to register by clicking on the “Create Account” option and fill in all the necessary details like name, Aadhar number, date of birth, mobile number, email ID, and security pin. The system uses the Aadhar details for verification, and, therefore, your details need to match. It features a two-step authentication that requires users to input the OTP sent on their registered mobile numbers, then prompts them to set up a pin/password for the account. Activating the DigiLocker account will enable you to upload files, manage them, and make them shareable.
6. What can you store on DigiLocker?
The document management system allows institutions, individuals, and organizations to store vital documents and certificates, including driving licenses, PAN cards, insurance policies, voter ID, exam mark sheets, COVID Vaccination certificates, and others in an electronic format. Once users create accounts, they get a dedicated cloud storage space that enables them to upload their documents and keep them safe. The system accepts documents saved in basic formats like PDF, PNG, and JPEG.
7. How to Upload your documents
If you want to upload files on DigiLocker, sign in to your account, access the dashboard on your screen, and click on the “Upload documents” link displayed on the left-hand side of the home page. Select the correct document type from the displayed menu and upload a scanned copy. Those who may prefer maintaining a separate file for uploading files can choose the folder option and add a unique description for uploading each document. Tap on the upload button and select the file you want to upload from your computer or phone, and then choose the option to save.
8. The ‘Issued document’ section on DigiLocker
The home section on DigiLocker features several segments that allow citizens to upload documents or have them issued by different agencies. ‘Issued Documents’ segment displays all the certificates and documents issued by the relevant government departments, including the State Government, Central Government, insurance, banking, health, and other departments. If you wish to have any document or certificate issued, select the right category ‘issued documents,’ narrow down the issuing agency and enter your details. The files will be issued and uploaded to your DigiLocker account.
9. System benefit to users
DigiLocker provides a secure platform for users to store and manage their documents on the cloud and retrieve them from any place at their convenient times. It helps eliminate the need for using physical documents and facilitates prompt service delivery. The system intends to minimize costs, eliminate customer complaints associated with slow delivery, and enhance turnaround times for services in sectors like the Government, health, financial, education, and employment.
10. DigiLocker is free of cost
DigiLocker is a government initiative that does not involve direct or hidden costs. Users are not required to pay any money to have any document stored, verified, or issued. Accessing your files and sharing them with different agencies is free of cost. In addition, downloading the DigiLocker app on your mobile device is free.
11. System Safety
Safety is a primary concern when dealing with systems and applications. According to Reliance Digital, DigiLocker implements all the required security measures to ensure your data is protected. The app uses 256-bit SSL encryption technology to ensure data security. It is also hosted following the ISO 27001standards to secure users’ personal and financial assets information. In addition, the DigiLocker prevents unauthorized access of personal data by providing user authentication measures during sign-up and when accessing the system. Both the web and mobile applications require you to provide your registered Aadhaar when creating an account and a mobile OTP when availing of the services provided. It also terminates sessions when it detects no activity for a lengthy period.
12. Digilocker’s Provisions for Drivers
The Government of India made provisions for individuals to acquire driving licenses and registration certificates from the relevant issuing authority via this digital locker. According to Paisa Bazaar, documents verified in DigiLocker may be used in place of the original ones. Drivers can store a digital copy of their license on this system and present it to the transport authority or traffic officers on their phone or any other gadget. In addition, the Ministry of Road Transport and highway issued a notification acknowledging that documents pulled into the DigiLocker app will be legally recognized as equivalent to the original copies, according to the Information Technology Act of 2000.
13. DigiLock facilitates the issuance of educational certificates
Obtaining academic documents or educational certificates from the relevant board is one of the challenging tasks that often consumes lots of time. The DigiLocker has made it simpler by allowing to have an educational document issued via the app. More than 20 core educational certificates are available in the DigiLocker ecosystem. In addition, several state and central institutions and educational boards issue certificates to students through this digital locker. Prominent issuing authorities under this section include CICSE, BSEB, CBSE, PSEB, Maharashtra State Board, NIOS, and Jharkhand Academic Council.
14. DigiLocker promotes a Corruption-free society
Corruption is often associated with direct human interactions. Several years ago, obtaining certain documents or services from different sectors and government departments was impossible without paying the bribe. Digital technologies like DigiLocker have streamlined the processes, making them corruption-free. For instance, you can apply for a passport, book appointments, and submit your documents without using the middleman. The system promotes digitization and further reduces the human interaction to avail Government and other essential services.
15. How is the E-signature feature in the DigiLocker useful?
Several years ago, citizens needed to get their documents attested by a certified officer. But today, DigiLocker allows them to easily sign a document online and share it with the requesting authority via email. The e-Sign feature on this app is similar to self-attestation, allowing individuals to assert that the documents are genuine. Organizations and entities can validate the credentials of the holder by matching the key on the e-signature The e-signature feature helps citizens save time and avoid standing in long queues to sign documents like passports, driving licenses, ration, and cards. You can use the app to complete the process of digital signing, facilitated by the Aadhaar e-KYC service through fingerprint authentication or OTP. This facility is helpful for opening bank accounts, e-filing of income, self-attestation, admission in educational institutions, driving license renewal, and vehicle registration.
16. Stakeholders in the DigiLocker app
The DigiLocker system has three primary stakeholders; the resident, issuer, and requester. The resident refers to the individuals using the service based on their Aadhaar number. Issuers are the entities providing different e-documents and may include government agencies, education boards, and the income tax department. ‘Requester’ is a common term describing all agencies and organizations that request secure access to specific e-documents stored with a repository on this platform.
17. The platform has crossed 100 million users
The DigiLocker is a pioneer in the cloud-based storage sector, offering a platform for certificate and document issuance, verification, and storage in a secure digital locker. According to the Business Standard, the web service has more than 101.1 million registered users and has issued about 4.94 billion documents so far. Today, citizens can store copies of up to 568 different documents on a safe and secure cloud platform.
18. What are the primary technology components on the DigiLocker?
Technology components describe the major elements of a technology architecture or landscape and are the building blocks that support a business. The DigiLocker system features various technology components like the Repository, which comprises a collection of e-documents displayed through standard APIs to ensure real-time access and security. The second component is an access Gateway that provides a secure mechanism for requesters to access files from different repositories in real-time, using URI (Uniform Resource Indicator). The DigiLocker Portal is a technology component that focuses on providing dedicated personal cloud spaces linked to each user’s Aadhaar and allowing storage for e-documents.
19. Can you use DigiLocker in other countries?
The DigiLocker services are only available for Indian citizens. When opening an account, you must have an Aadhaar number (Aadhaar card). According to ANDTV, an Indian mobile number linked to your Aadhaar is required when opening a DigiLocker account, meaning individuals outside India cannot sign up or use this system.
20. Additional details concerning the DigiLocker
Here are several essential facts about DigiLocker: For starters, An individual can only have one DigiLocker account since all accounts are linked to the users’ Aadhaar. The system allows you to upload only one document at a time. The appropriate file size for uploading a document is 1MB. Uploaded documents are saved in PDF formats. Users have to scan their certificates and documents and save the copies on their devices before uploading them on DigiLocker’s database. Digital technologies, including mobile applications and cloud computing, have emerged as powerful tools for steering rapid economic growth and citizen empowerment in different regions across the globe. Companies, government institutions, and individuals are increasingly adopting them in their everyday tasks as they help people connect, share information, increase productivity, and be more effective. In addition, the cost-effectiveness and availability of different solutions have facilitated the growth in global digital technology. The DigiLocker is a revolutionary technology tool that provides a safe and convenient environment for storing and managing documents.
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Written by Allen Lee
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