In a proactive move to enhance security within the National Pension System (NPS) network, the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) is set to roll out a new two-factor authentication system for the Central Recordkeeping Agency (CRA) login. This initiative, scheduled to be implemented on April 1, 2024, aims to fortify user protection and safeguard the interests of subscribers and stakeholders.

“The amendments to NPS Trust Regulations simplify the provisions related to appointment of Trustees, their terms and conditions, holding of meetings of Board of Trustees and appointment of CEO - NPS Trust,” the government says.

According to a circular issued on February 20, 2024, PFRDA called for the integration of Aadhaar-based authentication as an additional layer of security for accessing the CRA system. As the regulatory body overseeing the NPS, a voluntary defined contribution pension system established by the Central government, PFRDA views this as a strategic measure to create a secure environment for all NPS-related activities conducted by government offices and autonomous bodies.

PFRDA outlined its plan to disseminate a detailed standard operating procedure (SOP) and process flow to government nodal offices. "Extensive engagement with nodal officers is on the agenda to ensure a seamless transition and awareness of the changes among stakeholders."

The circular also advised all government sector offices and autonomous bodies to prepare for the implementation of Aadhaar-based login and authentication within the CRA system.

Key changes in NPS CRAs: 1. New Login System: The PFRDA circular announced the integration of Aadhaar-based login authentication with the existing user ID and password-based login process, introducing two-factor authentication for accessing the NPS Central Record-keeping Agency (CRA) system. 2. Authentication Enhancement: The Aadhaar-based login authentication will supplement the current user ID and password-based login process, bolstering the CRA system's accessibility through two-factor authentication.

3. Upcoming Standard Operating Procedure: While the PFRDA did not provide specific details about the standard operating procedure, it conveyed that all CRAs will furnish a comprehensive SOP, along with the process flow, to government nodal offices. This procedural guide will be explained to nodal officers to facilitate a smooth transition.

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