Centre for Internet & Society

Independent security researcher Kodali Srinivas tweeted screenshots of Aadhaar data of 89,38,138 MNREGA workers available on the Andhra Pradesh Benefit Disbursement Portal.

The article was published in New Indian Express on April 27, 2018.

Independent security researcher Kodali Srinivas, who exposed the leakage of Aadhaar and other personal data of 1.34 lakh beneficiaries on the State Housing Corporation website, on Thursday tweeted screenshots of Aadhaar data of 89,38,138 MNREGA workers availalbe on the Andhra Pradesh Benefit Disbursement Portal, which is maintained by APOnline, a joint venture between the Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and the State government.

Hours after he blew the whistle, the website administrators began masking the data. In May 2017, Srinivas had co-authored a report for the Centre for Internet and Society, exposing how the Aadhaar data of 13.5 crore card holders was leaked online. The data was then leaked by four government portals, National Social Assistance Programme, National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, Chandranna Bima Scheme of the Government of Andhra Pradesh and Daily Online Payment Reports of NREGA of the Government of Andhra Pradesh.

It appears that almost a year later, nothing much has changed. Srinivas told TNIE he had sent a mail to the chief operating officer, APOnline and Universal Identification Authority of India, the National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Centre, and CERT-In, the Centre's cyber response wing. When contacted, Balasubramanyam, Joint Secretary (NREGS) told TNIE, "I have seen it. It is Benefit Disbursement Portal... not maintained by us. We have been very careful ever since that massive leak of data last year."

Executive (operations), APOnline, S Chandramouleeswara Reddy refused comment saying that he was not the competent authority to speak on the issue. APOnline developed ICT solution for MGNREGA scheme, a framework involving Department of Posts, for disbursement of entitlements after accurate authentication of the entitlements through finger print authentication. TCS implements the ICT solution for MGNREGA in the State.