(credit to http://www.ibiblio.org/Dave/)
I have recently been reading up on RFID technology. I remember a few years ago Esso gas coming out with a dongle you put on your keychain that held your credit card information. You waved it in-front of a pad, and you were good to go. I didn’t sign up for it as I questioned the security of the device. Now, a few years later, these RFID tags are being put into almost everything! So I have been reading up on it…
RFID chips hold information like an identifying number for inventory, credit card information for consumer transactions, personal information for use in passports(the same information that is printed within the passport and will also include a digital picture of the owner), personal information implanted under the skin to track criminals and VIP guests at dance clubs in some urban centres…The list goes on.
I could ramble on as to how evil this is(I probably will…). There is no way I want a chip implanted in my clothes(Wal-mart is doing it for “inventory control”), on my credit card, on my identification, inside my money. These chips can be read from up to 10 meters away! If the information on the chip has my personal information, then you can basically be tracked wherever you go. The technology is there. Employers now have these chips in employee identification cards, and have RFID readers on the premise to let them into various rooms.
I can’t tolerate that cash is disappearing, and that the RFID cards/dongles are being promoted for their “convenience”. I had the same feeling when Safeway came out with the club card. You didn’t get the price listed on an item, unless you got one of their cards. You of course had to pony up your personal information to get the sale price. It is consumer profiling. Safeway knows what you buy, when you buy it, and your name, phone number, email etc…So, I gave a fake name, phone number, email…Still, I get hooked on AirMiles. So I use my Mastercard and Airmiles card. So that kind of messes up my privacy too! But I think that I am going to go back to cash soon.
As time goes on, I am feeling like I am being watched by far too many organizations. Maybe not watched, but things I do can be re-created. Maybe I am just being paranoid, but I don’t think so. If all my transactions, movements, and clothing end up involving RFID technology, then everything I do is or can be monitored. I don’t believe that humans should be monitored. If I have done something wrong, then arrest me, put me through a court of law, allow me the right to defend myself, and assume my innocence until you prove me guilty. Monitoring innocent citizens is wrong. If I have done nothing wrong, then do not track me. Period.
Much along the same vein, my grandmother is in an old folks home, and recently got transferred to a new facility. This new place is beautiful. She loves it there! I am happy for her. it is hard enough getting old, so when they feel better in a new environment, it is a good thing. But, it is not owned by the government. It is a private facility. The care is now handled by non-union staff. And, this company has a policy that guests have to be fingerprinted.
They will have an electronic copy of a guest’s fingerprint. Who the hell are they to take such personal information in order to visit a loved one? They say that it is so we can be let in if there is no staff there. Why the hell aren’t there staff there?
So, sad to say, but my grandmother will have to leave the facility to have me visit, because I will not give them my fingerprint. I simply do not trust them to keep it secure, and they have no right to ask me for it. I will sign a guest book during regular hours, and there had better be staff there when I do! Cheaper for some sleazy corporation to take my fingerprint than actually pay a real person to be there for the elderly. Bastards.
I have put together a list of links for you to check out on RFID technology. As well, a short video on the Discovery Channel bowing to corporate pressure and not airing a segment on how easy RFID technology is being hacked!
To start off, here is a link to the wikipedia entry on RFID.
Another great article(not so lengthy and an easier read) over at securityfocus.com
Engadget has a nice story on hacking RFID credit cards with an $8 reader. Nice…
Lastly, here is the short video by Mythbusters about RFID, and NOT being able to do a piece on it.
Who would have thunk that I would have something in common with the religious right????