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How to generate and retrieve your Aadhaar Virtual ID

UIDAI has introduced the new Aadhaar Virtual ID to prevent data misuse.

aadhaar card image


  • Aadhaar Virtual ID (VID) aims to protect your biometric details.

  • The VID will replace your 12-digit Aadhaar number with a 16-digit randomly generated number.

  • The Aadhaar Virtual ID is currently in beta.

Today, data privacy has become more important than ever. Over the past few months, we have come across reports about unauthorized access to Aadhaar data, Facebook-Cambridge Analytica data breach and more. And with Aadhaar having details of your phone number, address and your biometrics, privacy and security of your Aadhaar data is a must. To address these issues, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) unveiled a new security layer called ‘Virtual ID’ (VID) in January aimed at protecting your biometrics.

Now, nearly after three months, UIDAI has launched the much awaited Virtual ID in Beta, which will replace your 12-digit Aadhaar number with a randomly generated 16-digit number. It will allow users to quote their Virtual ID without disclosing the 12-digit Aadhaar number for identification and verification purposes.

UIDAI has also stated that starting June 1, 2018, all agencies that undertake Aadhaar authentication will have to accept VID from their users. To begin with, you can use VID beta to update address in Aadhaar online. The UIDAI tweeted about the same, and had urged users generate their VID from Aadhaar website.

The benefit of Aadhaar Virtual ID is that you won’t be actually sharing your 12-digit Aadhaar number, nor your biometrics. And while authentication, the service provider will only get access to the required details.

For instance, if you are getting a SIM connection, the telecom operator will only get access to your name, photo and address. However, if you are applying for a passport, the authority will get access to all of your details, including biometric data, which is necessary. Now, let’s go ahead and see how to generate and retrieve your Aadhaar VID.

Watch: How to use BHIM app

How to generate Aadhaar Virtual ID (VID)

Step One:

To begin with, head over to UIDAI’s portal and visit the Virtual ID (VID) generator section here.

Step Two:

Here, enter your 12-digit Aadhaar number in the left column, followed by the captcha, and click on Send OTP.


Step Three:

You’ll get the OTP number on your registered mobile number and your e-mail address. Now, on the right column, enter this OTP, and select “Generate VID” and click on “Submit” button on the bottom.

This will now generate a random 16-digit Virtual ID (VID) and you’ll receive it on your e-mail and phone number.

So, the next time you want to give your Aadhaar details, you’ll have to give the 16-digit VID, and not the 12-digit Aadhaar number. This 16-digit VID will be valid till you don’t generate another one by following the above process. In case you forgot the VID, you can retrieve it by following the below procedure.

How to retrieve your Aadhaar Virtual ID (VID)

Step One:

The procedure is more or less same. Head over to the Virtual ID (VID) generator section here, and enter your 12-digit Aadhaar number, followed by captcha and click on send OTP.

Step Two:

Once you get the OTP, instead of Generate VID, select “Retrieve VID” and click on submit. Your Virtual ID will then be sent to your mobile number and e-mail ID.

While this is the web-based procedure, you’ll also be able to generate and retrieve the Virtual ID using the mAadhaar app. However, as of filing this copy, the feature was not enabled on the mAadhaar app.

  • Published Date: April 4, 2018 7:34 PM IST