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Concerns raised about RFID and privacy

September 26, 2008 by  

RFID technology raises privacy concernsThe growth of radio frequency identification (RFID) and related technologies raises questions about how to protect people’s privacy, according to participants at a Federal Trade Commission workshop.

Government officials, industry representatives and consumer advocates met earlier this week to discuss concerns about security, CNET reports.

Some industry representatives argued that regulations relating to these concerns could interfere with the technology’s development, while consumer groups cautioned that privacy standards should be set sooner rather than later.

"Our discomfort stems from the fact that strong security is not always built into the (RFID technology) to begin with," Susan Grant, director of consumer protection for the Consumer Federation of America, was quoted as saying. "Very often, it’s an afterthought."

The U.S. Department of State already issues passports that are equipped with a 64-kilobyte RFID chip containing the traveler’s name, nationality, gender, birth date and place, and photograph.

Some states have passed legislation addressing privacy concerns connected to RFID. Washington and California both have laws that limit how RFID may be used.
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  • patty

    My husband and I were blogging on ABC News yesterday about Obama and all our posts have been deleted. What happened to freedom of speech. They were not mean and we did not use filthy language in the blogs we just stated some facts!!!

    • Salmon

      Since when do you feel you have freedom of speech? They removed that when we lost the right to pray or read the bible at school. The freedom of Religion has been assaulted for centuries and you folks(who don’t stand up for Christians) are just now starting to feel it? Welcome to discrimination! Read 2Chr7:14; it will help.

  • Dan Burke

    Let me think… I actually read about some of the dangers of RFID months ago. Did you know that someone could actually pick you out from the seclusion of, oh, that ever popular movie cliche of the unmarked van without windows? Oh yeah. Even if they cannot duplicate your RFID, as long as they can detect it (because it does give off a signal–that is how it works), they can target you. Want an American tourist to abduct and make an example of for your cause? Just look for that RFID. Maybe you want to rob an American tourist? Just look for that RFID.

  • Liddy Olson

    I think it is appropriate to be concerned about the RFID technology. There will be many places where it will be applied that may risk our security. I did want to mention, though, that for passports and credit cards that carry the RFID device, you can get covers for them that block their signals while you are not using them or displaying them. It will be at the point of use locations where you will be vulnerable.

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