Saturday, November 17, 2007

We the people will not be chipped

RFID or Radio-Frequency-Identification tags have been used to track product shipments, enable digital payments on transport systems and tollways, identify animals such as cattle, migrating birds and pets, protect fleet or privately owned motor vehicles. But are we becoming a surveillance state?

The use of RFID technology has engendered considerable controversy and even product boycotts by consumer privacy advocate Caspian (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering) refer to RFID tags as "spychips". The two main privacy concerns regarding RFID are:

  1. Since the owner of an item will not necessarily be aware of the presence of a RFID tag and the tag can be read at a distance without the knowledge of the individual, it becomes possible to gather sensitive data about an individual without consent.

  2. If a tagged item is paid for by credit card or in conjunction with use of a loyalty card, then it would be possible to indirectly deduce the identity of the purchaser by reading the globally unique ID of that item (contained in the RFID tag).

In a corporate consumer spy incident, which was uncovered by the Chicago Sun-Times, shelves in a Wal-Mart in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, were equipped with readers to track the Max Factor Lipfinity lipstick containers stacked on them. Webcam images of the shelves were viewed 750 miles (1200 km) away by Procter & Gamble researchers in Cincinnati, Ohio, who could tell when lipsticks were removed from the shelves and observe the shoppers in action.

.... and just to make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, the FDA has approved the use of the chips in humans......

In 2006, Cincinnati, two employees for the company citywatcher were forced to be micro-chipped with an RFID tag for improved security access to valuable data storage areas. The Baja Beach nightclub in Barcelona reportedly uses RFID implants to track regular patrons and allow them to pay for drinks electronically, while the Mexican Attorney-General's Office implanted 18 of its staff with tags to control access to a secure data room. Other suggested uses for the RFID chip include their inclusion into National Identity cards and replacing soldier dog tags with the implantable chip.

Although, not all tags are implanted within the body, in Japan and the U.K there is at least one active school where children are micro-chipped (on their bags or name tags) in order to track their movements in the interests of security. Ah, yes, the old propaganda technique "What about the children?", "do it for the children" and my personal favourite "But, we must protect the children".... kinda of reminds me of Labour (tweddle dee) and Liberal (tweddle dumb)'s education revolution... but alas, I will save this for another time. The United Sates is already undergoing biometric data collection of children at primary schools in the interests of finding them quickly if they are abducted or assaulted, but then, isn't it easier to introduce a National I.D card when you already have all the information, you just need to wait a generation or two.....

Getting back to the real matter at hand - Japan is looking to create an Island where everything is RFID chipped.

The nation is looking to set up an "experimental landmass" where a smorgasbord of sensors will "allow doctors to remotely monitor the health of the elderly," and in another instance, "monitor the movement of pedestrians and notify nearby drivers." Additionally, IC tags could be implanted into produce in order to divulge information such as where it was grown to a shopper's mobile phone. Reportedly, the government is talking with local telecom carriers, electronics manufacturers, automakers, and several "other companies" as it attempts to assemble the pieces, and while no specific test site has been nailed down just yet, "the northern island of Hokkaido or southern island chain of Okinawa" are currently the most likely candidates

(so much for the "size of a grain of rice" propaganda)

Makes you want to join the amish really.....

But for those of you who are more fight than flight, here is a legal company in America McKenna Long & Aldridge pushing to change the laws to encourage the uptake of the RFIP chip. Bastards!

Which just goes to show, companies might be pushing for these things to happen (micro-chipping the population), but someone is actually doing the bidding of these companies, because of the pressure to conform to the organisational culture (or they have bought the propaganda hook, line and sinker). We need to bring back social shaming! The excuse that you were "Just doing your job" just doesn't cut the mustard. Stand up for your rights, stand up in your workplace when the wrong thing is happening. Don't assume it's someone else's problem. We all have a responsibility to expose the truth. If you work for a company that is pushing this agenda, expose them!



Royce Christian said...

Are you really surprised? I mean come on, it's the government. They'll stop at [i]nothing[/i] to increase their control on the populace. Who needs the telescreens of 1984 when you can use microchips.

The only time I could see micro chipping being acceptable is in the case of an individual voluntarily having a microchip implanted, or using a chip like this to track goods in transport. Of course this would be entirely at their own risk, as anything electronic and connected to a network is at the risk of hackers.

What really affected me was the gathering of the biometric data of children in schools. Great state tactic, really. Get them while their young, pity the parents are perfectly happy with this.

Alex said...

No, it's not suprising.

I want to make sure as many people know about this as possible. Spread the word about micro-chipping, because the national ID card will be the first step.

But, in the words of George Carlin "Nobody seems to notice, nobody seems to care".

Check out the fema concentration camps in the U.S. presumeably for those who refuse!

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