Managing Director of Kotak Mahindra Bank writes 'ABCD' of finance

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Managing Director of Kotak Mahindra Bank writes 'ABCD' of finance

When asked about the magnitude of Punjab National Bank fraud, Kotak said that it was "shock and awe".

Riding high on the success of its app-based service '811', which was launched almost a year ago to double the customer base from 8 million to 16 million in 18-24 months, Kotak Mahindra Bank scripted the 'ABCD' of finance on Tuesday in the presence of Unique Identification Authority of India founding chairman Nandan Nilekani.

In an exclusive interview to India Today, Kotak Mahindra Bank executive vice-chairman and managing director Uday Kotak and Nilekani stressed the importance of Aadhaar for the future of digital banking technology. Kotak said that his "mentor and adviser" Nilekani had told him that Aadhaar would change the future of finance. "We moved to Aadhaar-based digital account opening via '811', which lets one open an account in three minutes. And the response has been great and phenomenal," he said.

The '811' service, available at about 700 locations where the bank has its branches, is a zero-balance account facility which can be used to open account through PAN and Aadhaar verification.

After the success of the app-based service, now Kotak wants to take it to the next level with 'ABCD', wherein 'A' stands for artificial intelligence enriching the apps, 'B' for biometric-enabled branches, 'C' for context-enhanced customer experience and 'D' for data-empowered design. What does this mean for the customer? "The customer will have superior experience and convenience, and with time, the ability to get money from banks based on Aadhaar data will result in wider spread of finance across the country," Kotak said.

When asked about the magnitude of Punjab National Bank fraud, Kotak said that it was "shock and awe". "We never expected a fraud of this scale and size. I am embarrassed as a banker. After all, it was the nation's assets and money."

Nilekani said that the Goods and Services Tax would force every business to declare its true revenues and invoices thereby playing a role in curbing financial frauds, but not completely. "Frauds in the banking system happen either due to collusion or procedural issues. These won't go away."

The chairman of IT giant Infosys also denied claims that Aadhaar data is not secure after recent reports of leakage of information emerged. "I think Aadhaar is a very secure and simple ID system. The data is with the individual bank or health care provider."