Equal has been built in partnership with India Stack and DigiLocker and has already attracted around 1 Mn users on its beta programme
Equal’s launch comes months after the government introduced DigiLocker storage and sharing services for MSMEs and startups
Last year, Google also teamed up with DigiLocker to enable the storage of digital documents on Android devices
GVK’s Keshav Reddy and former director of engineering at foodtech giant Swiggy, Rajeev Ranjan, have launched Equal, a digital platform for Indians to share IDs with one click.
The startup claims it offers a secure environment for users to store, manage and share government-issued documents, including PAN, driver’s licence and health and financial records.
The digital ID platform is targeting various use cases, including check-ins at hotels, coworking spaces and hospitals, along with verifications of employees, loans, housing finance, insurance and transactions such as real estate and vehicle purchases.
“Equal aspires to impact lives across diverse cohorts spanning white-collar to blue-collar workers, farmers, borrowers and consumers, helping them better manage their identification documents,” the startup said in a statement.
Reddy said Equal has been built in partnership with India Stack and DigiLocker and has already attracted around 1 Mn users on its beta programme. While the app is free to use for users, Equal charges a fee from business partners that leverage the platform to engage with consumers for obtaining their IDs, documents and records.
The key difference between DigiLocker and Equal is that while the former focuses on storing and authenticating digital IDs, documents and records, Equal has been built for sharing these documents through one click and consent of users to access places and opportunities.
The startup said it stores all personally identifiable information and data in a data vault, using tokenisation to enable further security. Equal secures the information using 256-bit secure socket layer (SSL) encryption for the information transmitted during any activity.
Equal claimed that using tokenisation renders the stored data useless if cybercriminals access the secure vault.
“The philosophy behind Equal revolves around addressing the identity pain points experienced by the vast population of 100 Mn Indians on a daily basis to access places and opportunities. Documents are scattered across bedside drawers, photo libraries, instant messaging apps and cloud drives,” said Reddy.
The platform will offer a substitute for file-sharing platforms such as Google Drive and Dropbox for sensitive documents.
Equal’s launch comes months after the government introduced DigiLocker storage and sharing services for MSMEs and other business entities, including startups, to enable more innovation in fintech services in this year’s Budget.
According to DigiLocker’s website, it has issued 6.22 Bn documents to more than 184 Mn registered users. Equal leverages DigiLocker to fetch these government-approved documents and records.
Incidentally, Google also teamed up with DigiLocker last year to enable the storage of digital documents on Android devices. As part of the partnership, the tech giant has integrated the services directly into the Files by Google app, allowing Indian users to access their DigiLocker documents on their phones.