Chip-enabled e-passport in India: Manufacturing of electronic passports will start on priority. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MEA) has plans to further simplify the rules and processes for the manufacture of passports, using modern technology, declared the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. S Jaishankar, in his speech via videoconference at Passport Seva Divas. Adding that "the production of electronic passports will be another important step in this regard."
India Security Press in Nashik will soon issue microchipped e-passports to Indian citizens. Although no specific time has been given, the government is making efforts to speed up the issuance of the chip passport to applicants. Middle East Airlines is working on passport delivery reform and efforts continue to improve the quality and security features of the passport booklet.
More about the Chip based passport
The Ministry of External Affairs has plans to issue chip passports soon, and the software for which has developed in India by IIT-Kanpur and the National Information Center (NIC).
According to officials, the new passport will improve paper quality, improve printing, and include advanced security features. India Security Press, Nashik, has been approved to purchase contactless electronic bushings. These will be used in the new e-passports.
The most important component of this passport is the electronic vaccines of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) together with its operating system. Approval for this has also been granted.
Financial Express Online said last June that all applicants' personal data will be stored on the chip and digitally signed.
If case the passport is tampered with, the system will be able to retain it and help immigration officials to not validate the passport.
"The information on the chip has been stored and protected in a way that cannot be accessed without physical contact," said a senior MEA officer while explaining about protecting the stored information.
Although the International Civil Aviation Organization has established globally accepted standards for how to read an electronic passport, it has not specified any format for the security features of electronic passports.
Chip-enabled e-passport in India: When was the concept rolled out?
The e-passport concept was introduced in 2017. According to official sources, diplomats and government officials will be the first to receive these passports. Then the general public will get them.
- New ePassports will have a thicker front and back cover.
- The silicon chip is likely to be integrated into the back cover and contains 64K of memory space.
- The silicon chip is likely to be the size of a stamp and will come with an embedded rectangular antenna.
- For security reasons, it has not been delivered to any commercial agency.
- The applicant's photo, fingerprints, and digital signature will be stored on the chip.
- It will have a storage capacity of 30 visits and international movements.
Chip-enabled e-passport: Why is it important?
While traveling, time is of the essence. In a crowded airport, e-passports take a few seconds to read. The government has already tested the electronic passport prototype in a laboratory identified by the US government.
Source: Financial Express
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