Data privacy concerns: IRCTC withdraws consultant to monetize passenger information

The Indian Railways Travel and Services Corporation (IRCTC) has withdrawn a previously announced bid to hire a consultant to monetize passenger data. The update was provided by a senior IRCTC official to the parliamentary panel led by Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Friday. The railway company announced the tender in the second half of this month. The tender has sparked controversy over privacy concerns regarding the monetization of carrier and passenger data. IRCTC has now announced that it is no longer pursuing tenders.

As reported by PTI, IRCTC MD and Chairman Rajni Hasija were ousted before the National Assembly Standing Committee on Information Technology led by Shashi Tharoor on Friday along with other officials. The panel convened IRCTC officials after reports announced the tender appointing a consultant for digital data monetization.

IRCTC officials confirmed to the panel that the company is no longer pursuing a tender. “IRCTC withdrew its bid due to failure to approve the Data Protection Bill,” an IRCTC official informed the panel, as reported by PTI.

The railway ticketing company has decided to withdraw the bid at IRCTC Friday’s annual general meeting, scheduled in advance summon in front of the control panel.

Through the auction, published in the second half of August, IRCTC sought to research and monetize data including information such as “name, age, mobile number, gender, address, e-mail ID, itinerary type, method payment method, login or password” and other details.

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