Digitized Thumb | A way forward


When I was a kid, while living in a village, I noticed two types of people. One type, educated (called as literates) and another type were uneducated (called as illiterates). The illiterate people were called as ‘Hebbettu’ (Thumb). They were called as Hebbettu because they did not use their signature and instead they used to affix their thumb impression on cheque/ documents.


Today, the literates also have become Hebbettu! Believe me, a thumb impression is gaining importance. If you are a banker, you have to affix your thumb impression to log in into your system. If you are working for technology companies, you have to affix your thumb impression on the scanner/machine kept at the entrance door of the office (biometric attendance system)


Finger Print

Finger print is unique to an individual (means each individual has a different set of fingerprint) and it won’t change over time (throughout the life time, even at 100 Years!)


The signatures may differ over time, but not fingerprint. So, thumb impression acts as an important identity proof. This is well accepted across the globe.



It was during 1900 that the uniqueness of fingerprint was discovered. From then onwards, it is gaining importance. Now, it is finding more prominence thanks to technology.


Importance of fingerprint


Sub-registrar’s office I am giving one example. Many property disputes, sale or purchase of property with fabricated documents, etc can be easily avoided with the help of fingerprint technology! The government is taking fingerprint of the citizens (buyers/sellers of the property) and it is printed in the Sale deed. Now the government should go one step forward and match the fingerprint of the seller of the property to his fingerprint at the time of purchase of the said property. It is very much possible. Only if it matches the sub-registrar should be allowed to register the sale. This one simple and effective move may help thousands of middle class people of this country.


Password to computers: Instead of regular passwords, thumb impressions can be a better alternative.


Biometric attendance system: Instead of manual attendance registers, thumb impressions can be a better alternative.


Bank account operations – instead of manual signatures, thumb impressions can reduce many disputes/wrong payouts by the banks.


The new government is taking a good initiative on digitizing India. Matching thumb impressions will surely help in reducing frauds, disputes and court cases!


Thought for the day

Life is like a fingerprint that can’t be changed. So make the best impression with it.


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About B E Kumar Prasad

B E Kumar Prasad
He is a Practicing Chartered Accountant in Bengaluru, India. He has 25+ years of experience in income tax, business setup, and NRI matters. He is also an Insolvency Professional and Registered Valuer (F&SA).Prasad welcomes your comments and questions. Please email him at simplifiedlaws20@gmail.com

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