Nadra says no risk to personal data
ISLAMABAD: A Nadra spokesman has denied that there was any risk of loss or leakage of personal data in outsourcing its operations in the UK.
Reference to the news item titled ‘War erupts in Nadra as operations being outsourced in UK’ published on July 14 in The News, the Nadra spokesperson denied that there is any risk of personal data of individuals being altered, damaged or stolen in any way. Nadra data is stored in the National Data ware House and every activity on the data is logged, monitored and archived. Nadra also uses state-of-the-art encryption to protect its data and there has not been any issue with the protection, safety or security of the data of citizens of Pakistan in the past 12 years.
Nadra needed assistance in the selection of buildings and to market the Smart NICOP in the UK. Since Nadra has no experience in the UK market it was decided by the authority’s board to have an open-tender for marketing and building services. A local marketing company will help turn the Smart Card into an attractive product by providing affinity services according to the local demands. An open tender was done and IIS was chosen through a competitive and fair process that extended over a year.
Only Nadra employees will be dealing with the data of Pakistani citizens. The centers in the UK will merely collect the biometrics and information and transfer them through secure encryption to Pakistan. In no way will an outsider be allowed any access to any data. All Nadra employees dealing with sensitive data are selected after proper security checks.
Such baseless and malicious statements not only damage a government organization but also make citizens lose faith in critical and sensitive operations of the country. Nadra reserves the right to take all possible action against blackmailers and slanderers at all possible avenues within Pakistan and abroad. It further clarifies that Interior Ministry and Nadra take all due care and preserve the sanctity of the data and at no time have shared it’s with any foreign country.
The record of Pakistani citizens has remained absolutely safe and Nadra has, under no circumstances, allowed any illegal access to anyone unconcerned, especially not to foreign companies and we pledge to uphold the same degree of data security. Only those Pakistani citizens who hold the requisite security clearance from the relevant law enforcement agencies of the country can work in data-acquisition and data-handling. The data is stored at a secure location and even all activity on the database is monitored and logged.