TCS will introduce chip-based passports by the end of this year: what an e-passport is and everything will change

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) appears to be ready to issue chip-based e-passports by the end of the year. According to the Economic Times (ET), TCS It is also setting up a new command and control center Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MEA) as well as a new data center to support the project’s backend requirements. Earlier this year, the ministry renewed its 10-year term PSK With TCS Rs. Deal over Rs 6,000 crore. The passport is part of the second phase of the project that the company has received from the government. The Passport Project is said to be the largest ever mission-critical e-governance program in the country. Here is a ready reckoner on the latest updates on e-passport and rollout.
What is an e-passport?
At first glance, e-passport looks like a normal passport. However, the e-passport is fitted with a small electronic chip, which is found on the driver’s license. The microchip stores all information printed on your passport, including name, date of birth, address and other details. The microchip will help the Immigration Authority to quickly check the details of the traveler. E-passport is embedded Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) embedded as inlay in chip and antenna back cover. Important passport information is printed on its data page as well as stored in the chip.
What is the purpose of this e-passport?
The move will also help reduce the circulation of fake passports. Along with issuing e-passports, the government aims to increase passport security, eliminate duplication and data tampering. Embedded with an electronic chip, they will help improve the level of identity verification.
TCS will set up new data centers and PSKs
TCS is setting up a new command and control center in collaboration with the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA). The current Passport Command Center is running from the TCS campus but in the Passport 2.0 version a single Joint Command Center will be set up on the MEA campus. The company also plans to refresh existing facilities (PSK) and systems (including hardware), creating new solutions for issuing e-passports. This includes introducing solutions such as biometrics, chatbots and auto-response.
What is the timeline for chip-based e-passport?
According to the report, citing a TCS official, the External Affairs Ministry is considering a launch timetable within this year.
What will happen to the existing passport?
Current passport will be valid. Passports currently in circulation will go through the renewal process with a new chip and when they are ready for renewal.
How the global chip crisis will affect rollout
Tej Bhatla, head of TCS’s public sector business unit, told ET that he did not expect the shortage of global semiconductors to affect the e-passport program. “Supply chain problems are definitely affecting everything. Even for Passport Service 2.0, we are setting up a completely new data center and two existing data centers will be refreshed. Therefore, we rely heavily on some hardware to come.” .From outside the country, “he said. However, he expects the e-passport project to be expanded for a while, which could help control this demand.

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