|UK report: RFID implants may be compulsory in 10 years|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Monday, 30 October 2006 00:00|
An official report drawn up by a group of academics for the UK Information Commissioner is warning that within ten years Britons could be faced with the prospect of compulsory identification implants. The report, written by Dr David Murakami Wood - Managing Editor of the journal "Surveillance and Society", and Dr Kirstie Ball - an Open University lecturer in Organisation Studies, states that Britain is a world leader in surveillance technology and its citizens are the most spied on in the free world. They warn that unless new regulations are brought in to ensure this new identification technology isn't abused, things could get a whole lot worse.
Quote: "For the past six years European countries have been using RFID chips to identify pet animals. However, its use in humans has already been trialled in America, where the chips were implanted in 70 mentally-ill elderly people in order to track their movements. And earlier this year a security company in Ohio chipped two of its employees to allow them to enter a secure area. The glass-encased chips were planted in the recipients' upper right arms and 'read' by a device similar to a credit card reader. In their Report on the Surveillance Society, the authors now warn: "The call for everyone to be implanted is now being seriously debated."
RFID chips are already being used in British passports, and Prime Minister Tony Blair hopes to launch a compulsory national identification card by the year 2010. The Labour government is already using satellite technology to spy on its citizens homes to calculate rates bills, and CCTV cameras are now monitoring virtually every car journey in the UK. George Orwell first contemplated the idea of compulsory microchip implants in his book "1984", published in 1949. 60 years later his own country is slowly becoming Brave New Britain. In 2002 Andy Rooney stated his belief that we need some sort of system for permanently identifying safe people, and if the UK government has its way, Britain may become the first country to attempt it.