Why and how to keep your financial documents safe online 

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Maintaining records in hard copies is always one of the major task in our “to do” list. There are always risk of loss or physical damage. It is safer to dematerialize and organize papers at one place for easier access. The government too recently launched a free digital vault service, DigiLocker, which lets you store such sensitive data safely. You need to have an Aadhaar card that is linked to your cell number to open an account.

How does the digilocker platform help

  1. You can access digital documents anytime , anywhere and share it online. Obviously, convenient and time saving.
  2. It reduces the administrative overhead use of departments by minimizing the use of paper.
  3. It easier to validate the authenticity of documents as they are issued directly by the registered issuers.
  4. Self uploaded documents can be eSigned which is similar to the process of self-attestation.

How it works

To open an account you’ll have to enter your UID number. The system will send a one-time password (OTP) to your registered mobile number and email ID to validate your identity. Once registered, you can start uploading documents under the ‘My certificates’ section (see box).
You can upload scanned copies, which, if required, can be digitally signed. The locker is also a repository of all your government issued e-documents. These e-documents are uploaded by issuers, government departments or agencies such as CBSE, registrar’s office, income tax department, etc., in a standard XML format that is compliant with digital locker technical specifications. Right now, you’ll only get 10MB of space, which will be later increased to 1GB.

While the documents you upload  can be shared via email, the e-documents from governments agencies can be viewed by an authorized list of requestors such as a bank, university, the passport office or the transport department. You can also digitally sign these documents using the eSign option.

Many options

Private e-locker services have been around for some time now. ICICI Bank has an e-locker service which allows customers to log in through their internet banking or ICICI Direct like Kleeto.in that provide secure online storage for a fee ranging from Rs 200 to Rs 2,000. For a basic yearly subscription package of Rs 200, Kleeto will securely store 15 documents of five account. Then there are private businesses pages each and an online storage capacity of up to 50MB. They will pick up, scan, upload and keep the papers safe.

In case you need the originals, it will be sent to you within two or three days. A drawback of DigiLocker is it doesn’t let you compartmentalize documents. The private services lets you create folders and categorize to make browsing easy. However, cyber laws and jurisdiction remain areas of concern.

Data security

The government has ensured that your documents are safe from hackers. The OTP that unlocks your DigiLocker account gets erased immediately after use. The government’s locker is more secure primarily because the data gets stored within India and you are protected under the Information Technology Act, 2000. The account and related data being linked to the Aadhaar card gives it additional protection. If you store anything in DropBox or Google Drive, you are governed by US regulations.


Once you have registered, you can start uploading documents in the My certificates section.

Step 1: Select a document type. You’ll have options such as SSC Certificate, HSC Certificate, PAN card, Voter ID card, etc. in a drop down list.

Step 2: You are allowed to provide a name for the document.

Step 3: Fill in some details related to the document being uploaded.

Step 4: Choose the file from your local machine. It should not be more than 1MB in size and only in pdf, jpg, jpeg, png, bmp or gif format.

Step 5: Provide a short description of the document in 50 characters.

Step 6: Click ‘upload’ button. The document should now appear under the ‘Uploaded Documents’ sub-section.

Source: ET Wealth,15 Jun,2015







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