The Taliban are showing us the dangers of personal data falling into the wrong hands
The Taliban have openly talked about using US-made digital identity technology to hunt down Afghans who have worked with the international coalition – posing a huge threat to everyone recorded in the system. In addition, the extremists now also have access to – and control over – the digital identification systems and technologies built through international aid support.
While some Afghans are frantically trying to erase any trace of digital activity, on official databases, user deletion is not an option.
This is yet another wake-up call illustrating the risks that new digital technologies can pose when they end up in the wrong hands, and for the development community. It reminds those working on digital identity and digital public infrastructure for development, that the benefits of ID systems should never be at the expense of individual safety.