Aadhar ID VS Aadhar Virtual ID: What Is The Difference?

Aadhar card has been the primary source of identification in India for years. However, the security of the system has been criticized for its weaknesses. Therefore, UIDAI introduced a virtual Aadhar ID to safeguard the privacy of individuals from data-seeking enterprises. 

In this article, we will explain in detail about Aadhaar virtual ID and the purpose it serves in securing your privacy. Read on.

What Is Aadhar ID?

The Aadhaar number is a unique identification number issued by the UIDAI (Unique Identification Authority of India) on behalf of the Government of India.
It is a 12-digit unique number and can be used for all purposes like banking, credit reporting, etc. The UID (Unique Identification) is verified using your biometrics. 

What Is Aadhar Virtual ID?

The newly introduced Aadhaar VID or Virtual ID feature protects the privacy of your personal data such as demographic and biometric information on Aadhaar cards. The VID is a temporary and revocable 16-digit number that is random. This VID is mapped with your Aadhaar number. 
No one can derive your Aadhaar number from your VID, thus it prevents your data from being disclosed to other agencies. 
You can choose not to submit your Aadhaar number when verifying your identity, and just generate a virtual ID to verify any online login request.

How is the Virtual ID Different from the Aadhaar ID?

As the world's largest biometric database, Aadhaar has come under a lot of criticism for being too vulnerable. But it's now trying to become more secure by mandating that agencies only be able to collect data that is necessary for authentication. 

Before the VID came into operation, agencies were able to collect and store any information about you by using your Aadhaar number and biometrics. The VID adds a necessary layer of security to the Aadhar system. 

While it makes identification using Aadhar a little complicated, VID helps to prevent data fraud. The agencies are shown a temporary Virtual ID which confirms it is mapped to your Aadhaar number. 

A key aspect of this security is that the Virtual ID can be revoked at any time and does not last forever, so agencies cannot access details from past transactions.

How Can I Generate a Virtual Aadhaar ID?

All Aadhar card holders can easily generate a virtual ID using the official UIDAI website.  

Here are the simple steps you can follow to effortlessly generate an Aadhaar Virtual ID-

Step 1: Go to the official Aadhaar website.

Step 2: Login using your Aadhaar number and the captcha. Click on send OTP to receive the OTP on your registered number.

Step 3: Enter your OTP in the field provided on screen. When the list of services opens up, choose ‘VID Generator’. 

Step 4: On the next screen choose ‘Generate VID’ and enter your Aadhaar number.

Step 5: Click on ‘Send OTP’ to receive an OTP on your registered mobile number. Enter the OTP in the respective blank.

You will receive your 16-digit Virtual ID number on your registered mobile and Email ID. The 16-digit number that you receive is temporary and is valid for a finite amount of time.

VID can also be generated via SMS.

Simply type GVID followed by the last four digits of your Aadhaar number and send it to ‘1947’ through your registered mobile number.


Aadhar number is a unique identification number assigned to each individual. To protect citizens against identity theft, the government has introduced a virtual Aadhar ID, which is temporary and easily revocable. 

This virtual ID acts as a shield between your data and agencies trying to access your biometrics for illicit purposes.

Aadhar ID VS Aadhar Virtual ID Related FAQs

Aadhaar number is used to generate the Virtual ID. If you do not already have an Aadhaar card, you must first apply for one, and once you have your Aadhaar, you can create your virtual ID.

No, it is of no use to store the VID. The VID is temporary and can be changed by the Aadhaar holder anytime.

Yes. A virtual Aadhar ID is generated to protect fraudsters from misusing your Aadhar Number. So, you can safely share your VID as it is temporary and invalid after a period of time.

When the minimum validity period (presently one calendar day) expires and the Aadhaar card holder requests regeneration, a new VID is created and the previous VID is deactivated. If a resident requests the retrieval of a VID, the most recent VID generated is sent to the Aadhaar card holder.

When you retrieve a VID, you are obtaining a VID you previously created. When a VID is regenerated, it is set up anew, invalidating the old one.

A VID can be obtained in a variety of ways. You can recover your old VID or create a new one. Sending an SMS to the Aadhaar helpline is the quickest way to retrieve your VID. You must enter 'RVIDLast 4 digits of Aadhaar Number' and send this message to 1947 using your registered mobile number. You can also get your VID from the UIDAI resident portal.

On paper, VID is as secure as it can be. The process has been put in place to prevent agencies from collecting your demographic data.

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