Wednesday, October 05, 2005

The RFID Conspiracy …

Wired has a review of the book "Spychips : How Major Corporations and Government Plan to Track Your Every Move with RFID", almost the same book is also availlable as "The Spychips Threat : Why Christians Should Resist RFID and Computer Tracking".
Albrecht and McIntyre make a staggering accusation in Spychips: that Philips, Procter and Gamble, Gillette, NCR and IBM are conspiring with each other and the federal government to follow individual consumers everywhere, using embedded radio tags planted in their clothing and belongings.

I'm always wondering when privacy advocates will awake to the dangers of face recognition; afterall RFID Tags need to be put on a person, both the RFID tag and the transceiver are easily detectable, you can destroy RFID chips and you can easily put things in a conducting bag - stopping anyone from "seeing" RFID tags inside. With face recognition things are different: all you need is (a couple of) cameras that can be easily concealed or you just reuse existing CCTV cameras. No need to put anything on a person, no way to tell if your face is recognized and face recognition software has already shown is robustness against disguises.

The potentials for this technologies are endless - finally supermarkets can track how often costumers come to the store, even if they pay cash or don't buy anything at all. After you paid with your credit card once, all employees in all stores of the same chain will greet you by name ... Expect face recognition enabled cctv cameras in the supermarket near you in 5 years.

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