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Social Consequences and Effects of RFID Implants? 531

Posted by Cliff
from the chips-in-my-head dept.
kramdam asks: "Even with all the talk about privacy and security, there seems to be a growing community of people who are implanting themselves with RFID chips. Being a developer myself, I am intrigued about building applications and solutions that will open my doors, unlock my car, log me on to my computer and control home automation. I'm seriously considering jumping into this head first, being on the bleeding edge, and going with an implant. I have looked at resources like Mikey Sklar's site, and Amal Graafstra's site, since they are two pioneers on this subject. For research, I have started TaggedLife to document my own journey. I was wondering what the Slashdot community think about this. What do you think are the social, security, privacy, and health risks associated with this? What are the pluses? Would you do it?"
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Social Consequences and Effects of RFID Implants?

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  • And no I'm not a Christian fundie but implants creep me out to the max. Frist post?
    • I was thinking along the same lines. Well, almost the same lines. I was thinking it'd be great fun to creep out the fundies. A bar code tattoo on the forehead or right hand would be better though - especially if it was a real UPC code that would show up as "666" if you scanned it at checkout.
  • Well... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by borisborf (906678) on Wednesday May 03, 2006 @11:48PM (#15259753) Homepage
    Inplantable RFID tags are just not for me. Sounds a little to, well, end-times-ish. I would rather have an RFID watch or something. Sure, it could be stolen, but what about a central control website where if it was stolen, I just deactivate the code from it and put in the code for my new watch. Problem solved.
    • by maillemaker (924053) on Wednesday May 03, 2006 @11:55PM (#15259791)
      Since it seems security devices are always being compromised, I'd hate to have to cut myself open every time one of these things had been likewise compromised.

      I agree - an RFID watch would be much better - perhaps an RFID watch that can identify the person wearing it biometrically, even.

      Steve
    • Asside from the end-time-ish issues, which I share, I have a huge issue with having a permanent solution like an inbedded RFID tag. Why on earth would I want anybody with an RFID reader to figure out who I am. Besides, what happens if a guy reads your tag and then does a verbatium bit copy of what is read off your tag to another tag? Does that mean you need a new one. There is a post below which suggests a watch. I would go for that. Because at least with something detatchable you can always just walk away
      • Taking a razor and slicing my arm open to get rid of the tag is just not cool for when you want to be annonymous.

        You *already* need to take yourself apart to foil biometric ID. You'd need to get rid of your fingertips, retinas, and all your teeth, to begin with. The tiny cut that's used to insert and/or extract a chip is trivial - I've cut myself worse than that in the kitchen.
        • Re:Well... (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Feanturi (99866) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @02:40AM (#15260409)
          You *already* need to take yourself apart to foil biometric ID.

          Well the last time I had imprints/samples of any body-bits taken without my will or knowledge was, oh, never. Nobody hiding in an alley that I'm passing by is getting a good picture of my retina to forge. I don't believe any strangers I may have shook hands with were surreptitiously taking my fingerprints either. With an embedded RFID tag, you could be being positively identified at any time with a very minimal risk of the snooper being detected by you. With remote access, everything is right there for anyone with the right kind of snooping equipment. That's why they had to shield the covers of those RFID passports they came out with, so I guess one would have to put the thing in their wrist and then wear a shielded glove or wristband all the time to protect their privacy. Kind of defeats the purpose of the convenience, if one is at all privacy-minded.
    • Re:Well... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by dgatwood (11270) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @12:10AM (#15259871) Journal

      There are no real advantages to such a scheme and plenty of disadvantages. For example:

      • As soon as the technology improves, you have to get surgery to replace it with one that isn't spoofable.
      • There's the possibility of infection or other negative reaction to the device.
      • We have no idea what the long-term impact of these devices inside the human body could be.
      • And of course, there's the big one: instead of stealing someone's wallet to steal money from them, thieves will now start cutting off someone's hand---sort of a reverse medieval thing.

      Indeed, for me---and apologies in advance for my language---I believe the answer is not so much "no", but rather, "hell fucking no."

      • Re:Well... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by sconeu (64226) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @01:20AM (#15260169) Homepage Journal
        \i{We have no idea what the long-term impact of these devices inside the human body could be.}

        Actually, we kind of do. This technology has been used on animals for years.
      • Re:Well... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by MukiMuki (692124)
        First off, they'd need to cut off an ARM; they're usually placed in your bicep.

        Finally, no one in their right minds would ever take this approach. It's just not efficient enough. Identity theft works best in VOLUME.

        So at that point, you need to start seeing things in a "scarier" light.

        Remember how in movies it only takes an expert thief bumpin into you at the shoulder to take your wallet? Now they can grab a whole lot more with a wireless scanner.

        RFID devices outright GIVE OUT their information. That's all
      • Re:Well... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by slashdot.org (321932) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @04:39AM (#15260662) Homepage Journal
        There are no real advantages to such a scheme and plenty of disadvantages

        Exactly. For some reason most people here seem to forget the most important thing:

        RFID has nothing to do with encryption/security. It's a serial number. What fucking good is that going to do you? So your car will start when your serial number is near? It should be pretty clear that faking a serial number is trivial. With RFIDs you don't even need physical contact to achieve that.

        In other words:
        I am intrigued about building applications and solutions that will open my doors, unlock my car, log me on to my computer and control home automation

        will not be solved by RFID. I don't even understand where someone would get that idea. You'd be crazy to rely on that. If you think that doing security through positive identification of a certain physical human being present is a good idea (which is debatable to begin with), then you're probably better off doing fingerprint or iris-scanning.

        Now if RFID tags had RSA or something built in, it would be a different story. But they don't.

        Eh, this whole story makes no sense at all.
        • Re:Well... (Score:5, Interesting)

          by Nurgled (63197) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @07:07AM (#15260974)

          The car and computer thing are both daft, but the home automation goal has some merit. If you have a house where more than one person lives, having a home automation system that can track the movements of each person individually would be a major boon. Most current attempts at home automation are based around whether someone is in a room, rather than tailoring to each person.

          Of course, you could ask what it would do when two people with conflicting preferences are in the same room, but that's just a software problem and is thus much easier to refine over time.

    • Inplantable RFID tags are just not for me. Sounds a little to, well, end-times-ish.

      Revelations is pretty specific about that mark - it's supposedly going to be on the forehead or right hand. So if that's your concern, just get your chip somewhere else.
    • How does that solve the problem? You still need to buy a new watch. Plus, the thief would have to go within a couple feet (at best) of a Watch RFID Scanner. You're talking more along the lines of a cellular watch, which wouldn't require close proximity to anything. Unless it reacts to the RFID tag in your arm, in which case you've done nothing more than increase the cost of your watch, as you've still had to tag yourself.
    • Why implant when you can wear the tag around your neck, in a watch, or in your hair without the risks of a subdermal implant? Put one in your tooth I suppose if you're into pain.
  • Why? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by neostorm (462848) on Wednesday May 03, 2006 @11:49PM (#15259758)
    Why exactly do you need an implant for this? This reads more as an attempt at resistance-numbing the public to the concept of implants themselves, because franky there's no viable reason you can't have all the features you listed in your keychain or wallet instead. I don't see the threat of lost or stolen hardware to be worth it.

    • Re:Why? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by aemain (678301)
      Damn. Just listen to this guy [taggedlife.com]:

      Today I got a confirmation that my implanter is on the way. So excited about that! As I'm thinking about this project, I sometimes get overwhelmed with what can be done with RFID.

      I also got the super small chips in the mail today. They are much smaller than the 'small' chips out there. (Cool!)

      Damn. Its like MySpace, only even creepier!

  • You can also click on the google ads you see at the top of the pages.

    I thought Google forbids click solicitation like this?
  • ... but that's just me, I'm sure you'll be fine. :)

    Seriously though. In this day in age unless I give up my credit card, internet account and cell phone I just have to come to grips with the fact that people will be able to track me. The government can find me. Thieves can steal my identity. Why shouldn't I at least benefit from this lack of privacy.

    All or nothing, I wouldn't have it any other way. Chip me up.

    I salute you in your quest to be boldly public.
    • Thieves can steal my identity. Why shouldn't I at least benefit from this lack of privacy.

      All or nothing, I wouldn't have it any other way. Chip me up.
      Getting your identity stolen isn't the same as getting your possesions stolen.

      This guy wants his chip to unlock his house & open up his car.

      Unless his RFID is somehow immune to a basic replay attack, it won't take much for someone to rob him blind.
  • Sorry,but there is no way in hell I would EVER allow one of those put in.Mark of the beast..Government and corporations are NOT gonna be able to track my every movement.If it makes them nervous,good.It'll keep the bastards on their toes.
  • WTF (Score:5, Insightful)

    by robogun (466062) on Wednesday May 03, 2006 @11:51PM (#15259770)
    How about skipping the implant and using the keys like normal human beings. Oh I get it, CNN doesn't interview normal human beings. No way I'm pulling the chip out of my BMW key and implanting it into my body because I want to get into my car 0.001 second faster. /no tattoos or piercings, either
    • Re:WTF (Score:3, Funny)

      by lancelet (898272)
      But... my cat already has an RFID microchip! Oh no... don't tell me he's cooler than me. I mean, he's already more popular with women.
    • Also, it would harder to show off your BMW key ring, you poseur!

      =)
    • Well, if you're worried it might compromise your privacy, don't be. It will not be long until cameras are small enough and ubiquitous enough (probably mobile, too) that you can be photographed and identified in any public area (and probably many private ones, too) by face recognition software with access to the population's vital statistics. It doesn't take RFID to compromise privacy if that is the way society is leaning, and it's only marginally easier with a chip. In fact, it's probably less useful wit
    • You are correct that keys (in the case of, say, a door or car) are adequate security in many cases. If you need better security, use a "thieves lock" (it actually unlocks in the reverse direction than normal, with the normal direction causing the lock to disable itself until reset).


      However, let's assume that this person WANTS the most high-tech solution imaginable. RFID tags are dumb devices with no meaningful logic, which means you can't do encryption key negotiation - or, indeed, any form of encryption at all. Anyone with a scanner can lift ALL of your keys with a simple RFID reader and can then impersonate you with impunity with ALL electronic devices.


      If someone wants an implant - genuinely, truthfully, absolutely would die without one - then they should implant an intelligent device, preferably a small embedded general purpose computer. General purpose? Yes, then you only need one implant, which you can then program for ALL of your devices you want to control, rather than having one implant per device.


      Strong, crypto would utterly defeat the RFID attack on cars mentioned in an earlier Slashdot story. It would also make the computer "unscannable" the way an RFID tag is, because it's no longer just a passive device. Further, an intelligent device could do ANYTHING you wanted, whereas an RFID tag could not. An embedded computer could monitor your temperature and control the thermostat accordingly, for example. An embedded tag could do nothing more than get crushed as the blood vessels expanded.


      Personally, I would avoid implants. Implants can be thought of as deliberate splinters or deliberate cysts, depending on size. Both of these, when they occur naturally, can potentially turn nasty. The body really doesn't take kindly to foreign objects, if it detects them. When you've any kind of device that was probably not assembled in a clean-room environment, sterilized and completely clensed, there's a good risk that implants could carry unwanted hitchhikers. Even when it's all done properly, a good bruise near the implant could turn nasty. That's ignoring any chemical reactions between the implant and the body, which may have other unexpected consequences.


      (You should also be aware of materials used. Materials that have a higher-than-normal level of alpha-particle emitters could seriously screw things up. The skin is thick enough to absorb alpha particles, in typical real-world conditions, which is just as well - soft tissue tends not to react too well to such things.)


      The embedded computer shares ALL of the health problems of an RFID tag, though scaled up because it is more complex and involves more components. It also needs a power source, so you'll occasionally need to rip yourself open to replace the lithium batteries.


      Now, there ARE ways to embed a computer in a person in a way that would minimize hazards on a day-to-day basis. However, there you're talking major surgery for the implant plus for each recharge. Surgery is, itself, extremely dangerous and not something you'd normally do just to add a gadget to your life.


      It's possible to imagine surgical implants that COULD be recharged with less effort - such as enlarging the skull and using some of the space added, with a power outlet the bone can grow around - but we're talking serious sci-fi medical techniques here. Sure, there have been experiments involving wiring EEG devices directly to the human brain. Sure, even Stone Age medics could drill holes large enough to run a power outlet or an ethernet port. Sure, there are societies even today that deliberately reshape the skull. But to combine all of this AND enlarge an adult skull, not just reshape a child's... That is probably too complex for existing technology.


      However, were implants to be a useful thing for society as a whole, a deep implant (such as in the chest cavity - if you can staple a stomach in half safely, you can wedge a matchbox-sized motherboard in there with absolutely zero impact), or a skull implant would seem to be far more resistant to damage, far more powerful, far more useful, far less toxic and far less likely to trigger an immune response.

      • Noo, there's plenty of ways you can charge it, such as magnetically, which is how middle ear implants are charged (if people had to cut inside their middle ear each time they wanted those charged, I doubt anyone would have 'em).

      • I am a surgeon, so I do know what I'm talking about for the following concerns.
        Implanting a RFID is relatively easy - just a large sized needle to place it under the skin - and also fairly easy to take out that way too. The ones that have been used in pets without problems for YEARS! are covered with an inert plastic that also has been used for years in people, without allergic reactions. Yes I guess that if you did develop a large bruise,AND it became infected that the implant could get infected too, but
  • Trouble is that people like you are spoiling things for the rest of us in the long run giving politicians argument to make this mandatory.

    I am not religous but agree totally with the fear of the beast that religious people refer to.
  • Fuck that.

    I don't need a fuckin' implant. Give me a credit-card sized ID, like my old apartment complex had. If I need to, I can break it in half and chuck it in the river. The only thing under my skin that wasnt there from birth will be tattoo ink, thank you very much.
  • What is the need to implant something like this? You would be equally well suited in all those tasks to carry an unmarked gray card in your wallet with an RFID chip in it. I suppose it just seems cool and bleeding edge to want to mutilate your body with one of these things...
  • by Super Dave Osbourne (688888) on Wednesday May 03, 2006 @11:55PM (#15259789)
    I certainly won't even consider it. Nazi Germany comes to mind, marking folks for reasons of ID'ing them for whatever reason is not a good idea. SS is another thing that creeps me out, a system of identification, now illegally used all the time to limit people's freedoms. Business all the time limit doing business with someone if they don't provide a SS, yet that is illegal. When will it come down to the same with a RFID? I suspect sooner than later, especially if the government gets involved in the process, and it already has... FDA anyone?
  • 1. Innocent human going about their daily business

    2. Implantable RFID tag

    3. ???

    4. Profit.
  • Carry it? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jbbernar (41291) on Wednesday May 03, 2006 @11:56PM (#15259798)
    You could just carry the tag. Or wear it. Would that be too hard?
    • Re:Carry it? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by udoschuermann (158146) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @12:16AM (#15259902) Homepage
      That's right. Implanting the RFID tag robs you of the option of leaving it home when you really don't care to have it around and be trackable, unless your real intention is to explore the psychological implications of being robbed of that choice and having to learn to live with yet another freedom abridged (by free will, no less... how twisted is that?)
    • I'm completely in agreement with this guy. Would it kill you to stick a tiny object in your pants pocket? Really..

      Aero
    • You could just carry the tag. Or wear it.

      Make a piercing out of it! An implantable RFID chip dangling by a nipplering. Then you'd really be electropunk, but without getting stuck with outdated technology.

  • by Colonel Panic (15235) on Wednesday May 03, 2006 @11:57PM (#15259806)
    It's like saying "Homeland Security, here I am! Track my every move!"
  • by ndykman (659315) on Wednesday May 03, 2006 @11:57PM (#15259811)
    I think hardware upgrades should not involve needles, scapels and sutures. Call me crazy.
  • pluses minuses (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mikesd81 (518581) <mikesd1NO@SPAMverizon.net> on Thursday May 04, 2006 @12:00AM (#15259824) Homepage


    • Pluses
    * You're in a car accident or you collapse and you have to go to the hospital and they need a medical history.
    * You're child is lost and they need to find his address/phone number (this sounds incredibally pet like, I know. But the kid should be allowd to have it turned off/removed @ age 18 or younger if parents consent)

    • Minuses
    * Let's say someone finds a way to sniff the signal, and can open your car/house what have you
    * You want to take a job in the covert business..
    * Anyone can track you
    * If this takes off and business impliment it and you don't want to do it then you can't buy goods and what not. I personally would never do this. It's just wrong in sooo many ways, religiously and ethically.
    • Re:pluses minuses (Score:3, Insightful)

      by YrWrstNtmr (564987)
      But the kid should be allowd to have it turned off/removed @ age 18 or younger if parents consent)

      Once there is a generation or two that have grown up with them...they will see it as normal, and quite possibly won't want to have it turned off/taken out. And also...those 'kids' don't stay kids. They grow up to be politicians.

    • If you think it's rather 'pet-like' what will your kids think?

      I can tell you right now that I'd sooner perform ameteur surgery on my own arm without anaesthesia than leave that ***ker in.
    • Re:pluses minuses (Score:3, Insightful)

      by morie (227571)
      IMHO, being able to track your kid not only gives you a false sense of security (so you know where they are, now what?), it also does not allow them to grow up to be responsible adults by making their own decisions and mistakes without sombody following them every move.

      Therefore I move to transfer that point from (+) to (-)
  • Breast implants (Score:2, Insightful)

    Remember how the early breast implants were all "bleeding edge" and awesome? Then we found out a few years later they may oh.. kill you? Same thing here I suspect. The people who decide to "be first" quite often find out 5-10 years later it harmed the body quite alot..

    Now maybe it's just me but we hear a lot of stories about cancer being connected to various signals from things like mobile phones or microwaves. The RFID technology is still rather young and we don't know if it will have any sort of effect li
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Breast implants [fda.gov]

      The FDA pulled silicone implants to study them in detail. The claims of killing people were thoroughly debunked. Silicone breast implants that leak need to be removed, but about the worst thing that happens after a leak is having little lumps of silicone under the skin that move around.

      This is psychologically disturbing in the extreme. Naturally, women who had this happen and then got sick for other reasons blamed the leak.

      Saline breast implants are a genuine health risk if something grows in
  • ... Of having a small bump under my skin that sends out radio waves when close to a transponder, but I'd rather have it on a keychain or in a cellular phone - And of course, I'd rather have it used only in the situations I want it used in.

    Of course, anyone with the money to implement this kind of thing should probably just give it to me instead. I'll open your doors the old fashioned way, with no need for a costly renovation or painful RFID implant! Yours for just $200,000 tax-free per year. As an added bon
  • And RFID key or a card would accomplish the same thing. Why surgically implant one on yourself. At worst you are asking people to carve you up because they want to steal your car instead of just taking your keys or your wallet.
  • Life imitates art (Score:3, Informative)

    by digitalhermit (113459) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @12:25AM (#15259946) Homepage
    It seems that this is one of those cases where the crazy science fiction authors have pegged it.

    On the one hand, there's this notion that crime will be a thing of the past because at any moment we can see where everyone is. Want to go hiking and then swimming and don't want to carry around a wallet? No problem since every store can immediately verify your ID and credit as you enter the building. Super conveniet. When you step in your car it will automatically adjust the seats, tune your 6 presets, adjust the volumes, load your phone number list into the car phone, queue your MP3s. Online shopping will be a breeze since your computer will have scanners to verify your ID point-to-point. Identity theft? No longer possible. And crime will be down. Want to figure out who graffitied a wall? Just check the perimeter logs and find the ID. Want to see who should/shouldn't be in a building? Check the entrance and hallway logs. After all, if you've got nothing to hide, why should you worry?

    Then there's that other side... No implant? Then no credit for you. No purchases, no vending machines, no access to the school. Or maybe it will be an onerous process... Fill out a form, wait a day or two. In the clubs the twenty-somethings will politely turn away when you bring out *cash* to pay for a drink. What sort of freak pays with cash anymore?

    But more than likely we'll accept the intrusions into our privacy because it'll be do damned convenient. We pay for our groceries and medications with credit cards, shop online for books (ohmygod!) with credit cards, attend subversive movies such as Jarhead or Fahrenheit 911 or Narnia and pay with credit cards, we book hotels, rent cars to travel to Omaha and Key West and pay with credit cards... RFID is just the next logical step.

    (I just saw Gattaca so I'm in that sort of mood)
  • social, security, privacy, and health risks associated with this? I say do it. Privacy/security shouldn't be a problem for the time being, as there aren't that many RFID readers out there, and as long as no one knows what is attached to that ID, I can't see how it can be useful to anyone but you. I don't see any social impact either, aside from anyone who might be freaked out by your lights turning on and off as you walk from room to room in your house. I'm not qualified to say anything about the health ri
  • 1) As long as you "rolling your own" then you don't face much in the way of endemic risks by having an RFID implanted. It only becomes a major risk when the RFID's are standardized and then keyed to various large databases. As it is now, even you if your personal implanted RFID gets scanned, it means nothing to any scanner-system besides your own.

    2) What's the big deal with getting implanted? Just put a few in your regular "carry-ons" like your watch, your keyring, your cellphone, your sunglasses, a wedd
  • There's no way in the world I'd voluntarily put an RFID implant under my skin. As others have pointed out, there are just too many downsides. However, there is one upside nobody has mentioned. The next time you go to a Shadowrun [shadowrunrpg.com] convention, you'll be afforded tremendous respect and deference. "That's the dude who is ACTUALLY CHIPPED!" they'll whisper, as they stride down the corridors of the Airport Hilton, black dusters swirling in the dry, vaguely stale air.

  • by Fallen Kell (165468) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @12:46AM (#15260039)
    ...solutions that will open my doors...
    You mean like to your home? How is this secure? I mean, truely, how? What your RFID only will respond to certain readers? Someone won't be able to have a portable reader connected to say a laptop that reads your RFID and uses that to program the correct response code to other readers?

    ...unlock my car...
    I take it you didn't read the LA Times lately. For reference, go read this article [latimes.com] and when you are done, do you REALLY think they won't be able to do something similar? In fact it will be even easier, they just watch a place that gets a lot of expensive cars, place a few RFID readers around, wait for you to leave and then walk up to your car and drive away. They wouldn't even need to spend several minutes "cracking" your car's code since they got it from you when you drove into the lot.

    ...log me on to my computer...
    Get a fingerprint reader, or a smart card reader. Heck Sun has an entire system based on this for years, it will even move your active session from computer to computer (i.e. the applications you have open and running, your connections to other computers, the mozilla window on slashdot, the code you have compiling, etc...)

    ...control home automation...
    Wow, you need to have a RFID "implanted" to do this? Why not a card or a chip, or widget that fits in your wallet? Why not that for ANY of the above? All you do with the implant is tag yourself for everyone else to see and track. A card/chip/widget can be easily changed. Same reason why you need to change passwords ever few weeks, it make it harder for someone to compromise and continue compromising your security.

  • Why do you need a chip when your fingerprint or retina pattern would do the same thing? Better yet, they're significantly harder to duplicate and there's no chance for health issues.
  • We talk about RFID now because it's the only current technology we have developed which will function the way we want it to, and work consistantly. Give it 10 or 20 years though, and at that point we might have gattaca-esque technology which will make RFID obsolete. Would we need these tags if we had a device the size of a credit card which could read your DNA in under a second? Put that on your car to unlock it, and you don't need an implanted chip. Jumping on RFID chips now is probably akin to jumping
  • You know which story the media is just waiting for? The one where thieves start cutting off people's body parts to get to the chip instead of just stealing the keys or your wallet. That will be right up there with iPod-muggings and Internet child pornography as a set piece we'll read day after day after day. Mexico and Brazil, of course.

    Personally, I think having anything put in your body that doesn't have to go there is a stupid risk to take, however small it might be.

  • SOMEONE CUT IT OUT OF YOU!!!

    Thanks, but I'll stick to the flat metal thing with the notches cut into it.
  • One of the things with current physical keys is that if necessary you can 'lose' them, and no one else can open the lock. You can't do this with an implanted RFID key without ripping off your arm. This means someone can kidnap you, and they instantly have access to everything you have access to. There's no throwing your keys off a bridge or 'forgetting' your password, your presence is your password (not even something like a voice print, in which case you could simply refuse to speak).

    Heck, if they were r

  • why? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by austad (22163) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @01:09AM (#15260129) Homepage
    Last I saw, you could get these the size of a grain of rice. Why not just pierce your ear and stick it in the hole, or superglue it to your fingernail (which you'd have to redo periodically)

    Here's a reason no one thought of for these... If there's any ferrous metal in the device, you cannot go into an MRI machine. Additionally, even though there may not be ferrous metal in it, the MRI can still cause inductive heating on the device which can burn you. This is fine, when you're coherent enough to tell the docs what you have. What happens if you are in a car accident or have a stroke, and they need to stick you in an MRI machine?
    • by shogun (657)
      I imagine it would eventually become standard procedure to check for an RFID tag and remove it before an MRI. They can always stick it back in, or a new one afterwards.

      Hmm makes me think of a possible book or novel plot, someone who goes into hospital at the same time as say the president has eachothers RFID chips put back into each other accidently...
    • Re:why? (Score:3, Funny)

      by NoMaster (142776)
      What happens if you are in a car accident or have a stroke, and they need to stick you in an MRI machine?
      Why couldn't you wear a medic alert bracelet or pendant with a warning that you have an embedded RFID tag?

      (Yes, I know. And now you know, and I know you know... ;-)

  • Don't arrest the Illegals crossing the border, tranq them then tag them with permanant RFID implants. Preferably in the form of a suppository.

    Equip the police with scanners and a list of IDs. Then all they have to do is scan the illegals, and fine the employers. It will pay for itself.

    :-P
  • Obsolescence (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SecretAsianMan (45389) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @01:13AM (#15260142) Homepage

    Obviously, you have no sense of how quickly technology becomes obsolete.

    Otherwise, you wouldn't want to implant that technology into you.

  • Human Cattle (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Sure, go ahead, treat yourself like a cheap pallet of goods at walmart, or like human cattle with an ear tag and a chip (mandatory by 2009, new law, all livestock get chipped).

    I personally think it is nuts, and so obviously a big brother wet dream model as to make it a "line never to be crossed" issue with me. You really can't see this, the implications? Just extrapolate a little, use your imagination, think of the "bad" that eventually will come of this. And it will, bet your salary on it.

    And volu
  • by blair1q (305137) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @01:31AM (#15260207) Journal
    I typically wear pants everywhere I go, and the places I don't wear pants, I don't think I need to be uniquely identified...or at least, I think I'm pretty well recognized just by my physiognomy, yuh?

    So, please, instead of putting the proprietary and easily-obsolesced technological bolus UNDER MY GOD-DAMNED SKIN can I, yuh, just stick it in my pocket?

    That'd be brilliant. Cheers.
  • Read "This Perfect Day" by Ira Levin.

    Then implant an RFID tag in your body if you still want to.
  • Security? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Kuukai (865890) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @02:45AM (#15260420) Journal
    Being a developer myself, I am intrigued about building applications and solutions that will open my doors, unlock my car, log me on to my computer and control home automation.

    I don't see how this offers any practical security benefits. Let's explore a possible holdup situation involving a standard punk and an "early adopter":
    Punk: Gimme your keys or I'll cut you!
    You: Sorry, no keys, I start my car with a microchip in my hand.
    Punk: What the hell? Don't fuck with me! Gimme your keys!
    You: I told you, I-... Urrghhrgh *Sounds of dying*

    Nope, doesn't look too promising. Nope, not too promising at all... But maybe if you're reeeallly lucky he'll know about RFID tags and just saw off your hand instead!
  • Poor tradeoff (Score:3, Informative)

    by renoX (11677) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @03:28AM (#15260492)
    OK so you don't need keys, what happens when their is a power failure?
    You're locked out.
    To prevent this, you have to have keys stored somewhere to avoid the problem, the same thing you do when you use keys to avoid being stuck when you loose your keys, so there is no safety advantage.

    For me this looks like a stupid thing to do, the only "real" advantage is the 15min of fame of having implants, it would be much more intelligent to use watch or mobile phones to do the same thing..

  • RFID = 666? (Score:5, Funny)

    by DinoPirate5000 (972725) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @04:05AM (#15260576)
    there are some people who believe RFID chips are the mark of the beast. and it almost fits for the most part: And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a MARK in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the MARK, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six. Rev. 13:16-18 although it also mentions that you can also name the beast or know his number, so I don't know how accurate this is, but I've read about a computer system that stores all kinds of information from bar codes and stuff named Bavarian Economic Accounting Statistics Terminal (B.E.A.S.T. for short) There are a few other tie ins such as the bible mentions those wearing the mark will have blisters and sores on the skin where the mark is. This is possibly caused by the body rejecting the RFID chip. I know it may sound alittle crazy, but just think about it before you put these in your skin, don't wanna unleash the wrath of God on yourself because you didn't heed a fellow slashdotter's warning ;-)
  • Open source it (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Yvanhoe (564877) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @04:15AM (#15260604) Journal
    I'll go for a fully specified and documented chip that comes with OSS software. I'll also hope that the impantable "chip" will be a bit more than a plain passive RFID tag (come on, there's room in there!) and so i'd want it to be able to "shut off" to maybe be flashable, to have some sort of memory, etc...
  • Projections (Score:3, Funny)

    by j.leidner (642936) <leidner AT acm DOT org> on Thursday May 04, 2006 @06:24AM (#15260889) Homepage Journal
    there seems to be a growing community of people who are implanting themselves with RFID chips.

    Really? I thought I had read that the number of crazy people has has actually stayed pretty constant for the last 2,000 years.

    In other news, the next DARPA grand challenge is probably going to be "design a robot that hunts RFID-carrying humanoids" ;-)

Our policy is, when in doubt, do the right thing. -- Roy L. Ash, ex-president, Litton Industries

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