The Need For Digital Identity Verification In Higher Education And Examinations

The problem of identity fraud in Indian exams 

Whether we like to admit or not, higher educational institutions and examinations in India suffer from the mostly unaddressed problem of identity and document fraud. 

This phenomenon is so ubiquitous that it has seeped into pop culture. Those of us (who are old enough!) to remember the popular movie 3 idiots might recall how the film’s proverbial protagonist, Rancho (played by Aamir Khan), is revealed to have appeared for examinations and even earned a degree on behalf of someone else!  

Despite this being a fictional account of identity fraud in higher education, it holds a light to the vast underlying problems in the verification processes involved in our educational and examination systems. 

So how bad is this problem?


Widespread identity and document fraud in the Indian educational system

Due to a lack of data, the magnitude of the problem is not currently evident. However, we do not have to look far to find numerous instances of miscreants caught trying to pass themselves off as someone else or using fake documents while appearing for exams.

This problem is particularly stark in the case of public exams, which are notoriously ill-equipped to verify examinees’ identities. Just over the last few years, numerous instances have surfaced of people caught after faking their identities or documents for UPSC in several cases, army recruitment, and even COMED-K, to name a few. 

To top it all, these instances do not even take into account the “booming” industry of fake certificates in India, from degree certificates to even fake IELTS certificates

It would not be an exaggeration to say that the Indian educational system faces an identity verification crisis right now. 

This epidemic of fraud and forged documents does not just disillusion the country’s bright and meritorious youth, and hold us back as a country from achieving our true potential, but is also a stain on the country’s reputation on the international stage. 

Clearly, this is an extremely pressing issue that requires a comprehensive solution. So what will this solution look like?

Digital identity verification in education 

The problem with the current identity verification process in the Indian educational and examination system is apparent – it’s not comprehensive, it’s not fraud-proof, and it mostly consists of manual paper-based verification. 

Due to the large numbers of people who pass through the educational system, such manual methods are frequently prone to oversight and plagued by fraud. 

Therefore the solution is a scalable system of verification that’s entirely digitized with anti-fraud measures in place and is capable of verifying documents quickly against standard databases. 

Fortunately, such a system of identity verification is already in use by banks and other financial institutions, where fraud is taken much more seriously than in the educational sector. Several banks use AI-enabled identity verification systems capable of reading data off document images, identifying fraudulent documents, and checking the data against government databases. 

This verification system can easily be adopted by educational institutions and exam authorities to improve identity verification. Here’s what such a system will look like – 



A student can complete this entire procedure within minutes, with zero paper-based documents, using just a phone with an internet connection. Certificates can also be verified quickly and seamlessly using the same procedure. 

This system can easily be incorporated into examinations by providing five or so minutes to students to complete the procedure before allowing entry into the examination hall. 

So what are the benefits of employing digital identity verification for examinations?

Benefits of digital identity verification in exams

The advantages of using such a system are numerous – 

  • Zero chances of fraud: Cutting-edge AI and ML ensure that identity and document fraud are cut to zero. SignDesk‘s digital identity verification solution uses anti-fraud filters and comprehensive verification methods to ensure that data cannot be faked.
  • Cost-effective and scalable: Our solution can handle millions of verifications and allows authorities to verify identities using frontier-level technology at low costs.
  • Zero paperwork: Our digital identity verification system removes the need for retaining paper-based documentation for due diligence purposes and eases the burden of verification on the authorities while ensuring comprehensive verification. 
  • Path to a truly digital India: The usage of digitized verification methods sets India on the path to becoming truly digital and allows entrepreneurs to create innovative solutions to the problems facing the common man. 

While these are a few of the concrete benefits of digitizing the identity verification process, there’s one “soft” benefit that’s worth mentioning – the adoption of a fraud-proof and digital verification process will go a long way in increasing the faith of people in educational institutions and their ability to recognize merit. This is no small thing and can have significant consequences for the general well-being of the country.

Trusted and award-winning identity verification

To increase people’s trust, you’ve got to employ a trusted solution!

Our digital verification solution is trusted by 50+ major Indian banks to prevent fraud and verify customer identities. It’s also been awarded the Global Banking and Finance Review’s Best KYC Solution of 2020 in India. 

For Institutions looking for a cost-effective and comprehensive way to verify identities, there is just one clear-cut solution. 

Curious to learn more about how this solution works and what it can do for you? Book a demo with us now!

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