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> Implantable Microchip Technology- RFID- Human Chip
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post Feb 14 2007, 02:32 PM
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OOPS! DID VERICHIP HAVE A "SENIOR MOMENT?"

By Liz McIntyre & Katherine Albrecht

February 13, 2007
NewsWithViews.com

Human Chipping Company Omits Salient Risks from IPO Disclosure

VeriChip Corporation, the much-hated purveyor of the VeriChip human ID implant, is airing its dirty laundry this week. This is not by choice, mind you, but because the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) required the company to disclose its "risk factors" prior to launching its initial public offering of stock (IPO) Friday.

The company lays out nearly 20 pages of risk factors in its Form S-1 Registration Statement, a required document for the IPO. But what the company failed to reveal in its filing may be even more eye-opening, say CASPIAN privacy advocates Dr. Katherine Albrecht and Liz McIntyre. The pair, authors of the "Spychips" series of books, have been vocal critics of VeriChip, dogging the company in recent years and facing down its senior executives on radio and national television.

"Potential investors should be told how a hacker can simply walk by a chipped person and clone his or her VeriChip signal, a threat demonstrated by security researcher Jonathan Westhues months ago," says McIntyre, who is a former federal bank examiner.

"Omitting the cloning threat from its SEC documents is a serious oversight that could affect the value of VeriChip's stock. This is materially relevant information, considering VeriChip's claim that its product could be used to tighten security in facilities like nuclear power plants," she adds.

(For more on VeriChip's vulnerability to hacking, see "The RFID Hacking Underground,' Wired Magazine,)

Verichip also failed to disclose to investors and the SEC that patients' VeriChip implants might not be readable in ambulances. VeriChip's chipping kit literature cautions that ambient radio waves, like those in ambulances, can interfere with the equipment that reads the implanted tags, but this important fact somehow didn't make its way into the SEC filing.

(Scanned images of VeriChip's chipping kit literature, including the ambulance caution, are available heresmile.gif

Even with crucial information missing, investors may still find themselves scratching their heads over poorly conceived aspects of VeriChip's business model. "Anyone reading VeriChip's SEC filing would have second thoughts about the stock," says Albrecht. "Who, after all, would invest in a company that expects patients to document their own medical history and blood type in a database? This could prove risky for anyone, not to mention the elderly, Alzheimer's, and cognitively impaired patients that VeriChip is targeting."

She cites a passage from the registration statement that reads, "we anticipate that individuals implanted with our microchip will take responsibility for inputting all of their information into our database, including personal health records."

Other risks identified in the VeriChip filing could also scare investors away. These include anticipation of ongoing multi-million dollar loses, the "modest" number of people willing to get chipped, public opposition, and the risk that the microchip may be found to damage a person's health. The company also warns that it could be subject to lawsuits and loss of confidence if its patient database is unavailable in an emergency. The company admits that the database has been unavailable in the past.

The market seemed to be catching on to some of these problems as VeriChip began offering stock Friday in a bid to raise million of dollars to fund its human chipping operations. Analysts noted a "lukewarm reaction" to the stock and that it was trading on "the low end of the expected range."

To read the VeriChip Form S-1 Registration Statement (Amendment No. 7) see: [Read]



The VeriChip implant is a glass encapsulated RFID tag that is injected into the flesh to uniquely number and identify individuals. The tag can be read by radio waves from a few inches away. The highly controversial device is being marketed as a way to access secure areas, link to medical records, and serve as a payment instrument when associated with a credit card or pre-paid account.


© 2007 - Liz McIntyre & Katherine Albrecht - All Rights Reserved

http://www.newswithviews.com/McIntyre/Liz16.htm
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post Feb 16 2007, 09:34 AM
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RFID 'Powder' - World's Smallest RFID Tag

http://www.technovelgy.com/ct/Science-Fict...asp?NewsNum=939
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post Mar 17 2007, 09:33 AM
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AMERICAN EX. ADDRESSES RFID TRACKING PLANS FOR PEOPLE

By Liz McIntyre & Katherine Albrecht

March 10, 2007
NewsWithViews.com

The top brass at American Express, chagrined at the discovery of its people tracking plans, met with CASPIAN (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering) last week to discuss the issue. One outcome of the meeting was a promise by American Express to review its entire patent portfolio and ensure that any people-tracking plans be accompanied by language requiring consumer notice and consent.

The meeting was organized after CASPIAN called attention to one of the company's more troublesome patent applications. That patent application, titled "Method and System for Facilitating a Shopping Experience," describes a Minority Report style blueprint for monitoring consumers through RFID-enabled objects, like the American Express Blue Card.

According to the patent, RFID readers called "consumer trackers" would be placed in store shelving to pick up "consumer identification signals" emitted by RFID-embedded objects carried by shoppers. These would be used to identify people, track their movements, and observe their behavior.

The patent also suggested such people-tracking systems could "be located in a common area of a school, shopping center, bus station or other place of public accommodation."

Allegations of American Express people-tracking blueprints first came to light at a conference sponsored by the Consumer Federation of America in Washington, D.C. last month. There, Dr. Katherine Albrecht, Founder and Director of CASPIAN, revealed the patent pending plans that she and her "Spychips" co-author Liz McIntyre uncovered in their ongoing RFID research.

Soon thereafter, American Express arranged for four of its vice presidents, including the vice presidents of Contactless Payments and Public Affairs, to meet with CASPIAN leaders in a phone conference.

"We are pleased that American Express responded to our concerns," said Albrecht. "It's clear the company is thinking about privacy issues and wants to address them constructively. However, we had hoped that American Express would renounce its people tracking plans altogether and be more sensitive to the fact that placing RFID tags in consumer items, like credit cards, puts consumers at risk for surreptitious tracking by others."

In response to CASPIAN concerns, American Express also promised that it would make a chip-free version of its credit card available to concerned consumers who ask for it.

"Offering a chipless credit card is a positive step and should serve as an example to the rest of the industry," said McIntyre. "Consumers don't like RFID technology. Contrary to American Express ads, most people would rather leave home without it."

The complete text of the American Express people tracking patent application is posted here.

This press release is also available online.

ABOUT RFID

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) is a controversial technology that uses tiny microchips to track items from a distance. These RFID microchips have earned the nickname "spychips" because each contains a unique identification number, like a Social Security number for things, that can be read silently and invisibly by radio waves.

ABOUT CASPIAN

CASPIAN (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering) is a grass-roots consumer group fighting retail surveillance schemes since 1999 and irresponsible RFID use since 2002. With thousands of members in all 50 U.S. states and over 30 countries worldwide, CASPIAN seeks to educate consumers about marketing strategies that invade their privacy and encourage privacy-conscious shopping habits across the retail spectrum.

© 2007 - Liz McIntyre & Katherine Albrecht - All Rights Reserved

http://www.newswithviews.com/McIntyre/Liz17.htm
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post Apr 6 2007, 06:02 AM
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Friday, April 6, 2007

LIFE WITH BIG BROTHER
Driver's licenses to feature radio chips
State introducing cards that encode personal information

Posted: April 6, 2007
1:00 a.m. Eastern

By Jerome R. Corsi

© 2007 WorldNetDaily.com

Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire
The state of Washington announced a pilot project to introduce a driver's license "enhanced" with a radio frequency identification, or RFID, chip that would encode personal information and possibly serve as a passport-alternative if approved by the Department of Homeland Security.

Democratic Gov. Christine Gregoire signed a bill March 23 allowing Washington residents to apply for the $40 voluntary driver's license beginning in January.

Gregoire spokeswoman Kristin Jacobsen told WND in an e-mail the enhanced license is intended to be an alternative way of complying with the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative mandated by the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004.

The Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, the Real ID Act, the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America all call for ID technology to be built into drivers' licenses, passports and other types of border-crossing identification.

Concerns are being expressed within the Department of Homeland Security, however, regarding the wisdom of applying RFID technology to human identification programs.

Under the WHTI, as of Jan. 23 all citizens of the U.S., Canada, and Mexico were required to present a valid passport, or some other federally accepted document, to enter or re-enter the U.S. by air travel.

As early as Jan. 1, 2008, these passport requirements will be extended to all citizens of the U.S., Canada, and Mexico who enter or re-enter the U.S. by land or sea, extending even to ferry travel.

The Department of Homeland Security is in the process of setting requirements regarding acceptable documentation and preparing to implement the passport requirements under the WHTI.

Jacobsen told WND the Washington state enhanced driver's license will require verified proof of citizenship, identity and residence.

"They will look similar to current licenses and ID cards," Jacobsen explained, "but will have an icon on the front that indicates the holder is a U.S. citizen."

The $40 fee for the RFID license is designed to be less than the cost to apply for a passport ($97 on initial application, plus $67 to renew every 15 years). Regular driver's licenses in Washington state cost $25 to renew every five years.

"The enhanced driver's license will cost significantly less than a passport, but will carry many of the same features," Jacobsen stressed. "Features will include an embedded technology that will allow for quick and effective identification checks at border crossings."

Naomi Elmer, a spokeswoman for DHS, confirmed to WND that DHS is working with Washington state on the RFID enhanced driver's license pilot test.

Yet, Elmer positioned the Washington initiative under the Real ID, not under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative.

"Currently we are working with Washington state because they came to us with a proposal to see if they could create an ID that would be acceptable for Real ID," she said.

"Right now, we are now fulfilling the congressional mandate proposing minimum standards for state-issued driver's licenses and ID cards that the federal agencies would accept for official purposes," Elmer said. "These requirements will go into effect after May 11, 2008."

Elmer acknowledged not all state drivers' licenses can be reissued by that date.

"DHS is permitting states to apply for and receive extensions up to Dec. 31, 2009," she said. "For the states that are receiving extensions, their drivers' licenses will need to meet our requirements by Jan. 1, 2010."

Elmer told WND that DHS is working with Washington state on its RFID-enhanced driver's license proposal.

"We are still working out the details with Washington state at this time," Elmer said

DHS has not yet approved Washington state's proposal, she noted.

Within DHS, there is controversy over whether RFID technology should be applied to ID cards.

On Dec. 6, 2006, the Data Privacy & Integrity Advisory Committee advised DHS against the use of RFID for human identity verification. Concerns over invasion of privacy and whether RFID information could be kept secure were primary considerations in the committee's recommendation that DHS proceed cautiously before implementing the program.

Elmer also told WND that Washington state's proposal had nothing to do with the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America.

Under SPP, the "2005 Report to the Leaders" specified the SPP working groups have determined that "trusted travelers of North America" will be issued bio-metric border crossing passes, similar to the electronic measures being issued trucks and other commercial vehicles under the "trusted trader of North America" initiative.

The Real ID Act of 2005 was passed as Division B of the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act for Defense, the Global War on Terror, and Tsunami Relief, 2005.

DHS has issued proposed minimum standards for driver's licenses and identification cards under the Real ID Act.

Still, a move to reject the Real ID Act is gaining momentum at the grassroots level, with nearly half the states voting not to participate.

Idaho, Maine and Arkansas have passed state resolutions rejecting participation.

Other states – including Arizona, Georgia, Montana, New Mexico, Utah, Vermont and Wyoming – are considering similar legislation.

Bills rejecting Real ID also have been introduced in Hawaii, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina and West Virginia.

On March 2, the White House announced the requirements of the Real ID Act would be put off until the end of 2009, acknowledging widespread opposition to the measure.

http://wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=55058
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post Apr 20 2007, 06:17 PM
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American Express Addresses RFID People Tracking Plans

The top brass at American Express, chagrined at the discovery of its people tracking plans, met with CASPIAN (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering) last week to discuss the issue. One outcome of the meeting was a promise by American Express to review its entire patent portfolio and ensure that any people-tracking plans be accompanied by language requiring consumer notice and consent.

The meeting was organized after CASPIAN called attention to one of the company's more troublesome patent applications. That patent application, titled "Method and System for Facilitating a Shopping Experience," describes a Minority Report style blueprint for monitoring consumers through RFID-enabled objects, like the American Express Blue Card.

According to the patent, RFID readers called "consumer trackers" would be placed in store shelving to pick up "consumer identification signals" emitted by RFID-embedded objects carried by shoppers. These would be used to identify people, track their movements, and observe their behavior.

The patent also suggested such people-tracking systems could "be located in a common area of a school, shopping center, bus station or other place of public accommodation."

Allegations of American Express people-tracking blueprints first came to light at a conference sponsored by the Consumer Federation of America in Washington, D.C. last month. There, Dr. Katherine Albrecht, Founder and Director of CASPIAN, revealed the patent pending plans that she and her "Spychips" co-author Liz McIntyre uncovered in their ongoing RFID research.

Soon thereafter, American Express arranged for four of its vice presidents, including the vice presidents of Contactless Payments and Public Affairs, to meet with CASPIAN leaders in a phone conference.

"We are pleased that American Express responded to our concerns," said Albrecht. "It's clear the company is thinking about privacy issues and wants to address them constructively. However, we had hoped that American Express would renounce its people tracking plans altogether and be more sensitive to the fact that placing RFID tags in consumer items, like credit cards, puts consumers at risk for surreptitious tracking by others."

In response to CASPIAN concerns, American Express also promised that it would make a chip-free version of its credit card available to concerned consumers who ask for it.

"Offering a chipless credit card is a positive step and should serve as an example to the rest of the industry," said McIntyre. "Consumers don't like RFID technology. Contrary to American Express ads, most people would rather leave home without it."

http://www.spychips.com/press-releases/ame...conference.html
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post Apr 24 2007, 09:33 AM
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School district to take fingerprints for keeps
Click-2-Listen
By Christina Denardo

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Monday, April 23, 2007

When the state legislature passed a law making school employees get fingerprinted, they forgot to include one thing in it - require the records be kept.

For more than a decade, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which collected the fingerprints and compared them to criminal databases, threw out countless school employee fingerprints.

Without them, school districts and law enforcement agencies found it hard to determine whether employees had been arrested after they were hired.

The legislature has since required districts to recheck employees and wants FDLE to maintain the records and alert districts if employees get into trouble, but the extra layer of security is expected to cost the Palm Beach County School District about $1 million during the next two years.

Police staff have fanned out across the district with their fingerprint scanners to collect prints at schools. So far, they have collected about 13,000 fingerprints and expect they need to get an additional 9,000 by the law's 2009 deadline.

Although the district is paying for prints of veteran employees, thousands of substitute teachers are on their own.

Even veteran substitutes who have already undergone and paid for fingerprints have to cough up an additional $37 per print to pay for staff time, supplies and the technology used to get the print.

The total price tag is $84 - more than a day's pay.

School board member Bob Kanjian, who has heard from a veteran substitute who plans to work exclusively in private schools because of the fingerprinting expense, wants the district to look into paying for the recheck.

"We shouldn't put hurdles in front of them," Kanjian said. "We have to do it and it's good thing to have to do, but a day's pay? It doesn't make sense."

During a school board meeting last week, Kanjian said the district should pick up the fingerprinting cost after a substitute has worked in a school for a certain number of days. The district's chief operating officer is considering Kanjian's recommendation, he said.

School board member Paulette Burdick also agrees that the district needs to defray the costs of the recheck in order to keep them.

"That's a very good compromise to a difficult situation and an expensive situation," she said. "Otherwise, we might lose some, and as you know, we are in desperate need of substitute teachers."

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/localnews/con...rints_0423.html
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post May 11 2007, 09:36 AM
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VeriChip Corporation Announces Sale of VeriTrace System to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation
VeriTrace System to Be Used During Mock Disaster Drill Conducted by GBI and Other Georgia State, County and Local Agencies on May 9, 2007

DELRAY BEACH, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--VeriChip Corporation ("VeriChip" or the "Company") (NASDAQ:CHIP), a provider of RFID systems for healthcare and patient-related needs, announced today that the State of Georgia, through the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, purchased the VeriTrace™ system for disaster relief and emergency management needs. The GBI purchased the system, which consisted of 500 chips, 5 customized Ricoh cameras and 5 VeriTrace Bluetooth™ handheld readers, as part of their cache of equipment used for disaster preparedness and emergency response needs. The GBI plans on using the VeriTrace system for assistance in the identification of human remains and for tagging and tracking evidentiary items associated with remains in the aftermath of a disaster.

The VeriTrace system will also be utilized and featured today during a mock disaster drill with more than 500 emergency response personnel in Austell, GA. Besides the GBI, additional state, county and local agencies participating in the mock disaster drill include the Georgia Office of Homeland Security, Georgia Emergency Management Agency, Georgia Body Recovery Team, Georgia Search and Rescue, Cobb County public safety responders and other related agencies.

The VeriTrace system was created in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina where it proved helpful in identifying, tracking and accounting for the remains of victims from the hurricane. VeriTrace was used by the Federal Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team (DMORT) during the Hurricane Katrina recovery operations. The GBI personnel and other Georgia agencies assisted DMORT in the recovery efforts and utilized the new VeriTrace system. Recognizing the effectiveness and benefits of the system in body recovery and identification of remains was one factor which led the GBI to include VeriTrace in its cache of disaster preparedness and response equipment.

VeriTrace is designed to assist state and federal agencies in the management of emergency situations and disaster recovery using implantable RFID technology. The VeriTrace system includes a unique implantable RFID microchip, a VeriTrace Bluetooth™ handheld reader, a customized Ricoh 500SE Digital Camera capable of receiving both RFID scanned data and GPS data wirelessly, and a Web-enabled database for gathering and storing information and images captured during emergency response operations. This database ensures the precise collection, storage and inventory of all data and images related to remains and the associated evidentiary items. This also allows the recreation of an accurate and complete reconstruction of a disaster setting, crime scene or similar setting where recreation is necessary.

VeriTrace is the only end-to-end solution to use implantable RFID tags for such a purpose. The VeriTrace system is also the first identification and tracking modality to automatically record each tag's identification number along with the GPS coordinates captured by the Ricoh camera into the images, also captured by the Ricoh camera, during disaster response and recovery situations.

About VeriChip Corporation

VeriChip Corporation, headquartered in Delray Beach, Florida, develops, markets and sells radio frequency identification, or RFID, systems used to identify, locate and protect people and assets. VeriChip's goal is to become the leading provider of RFID systems for people in the healthcare industry. VeriChip sells passive RFID systems for identification purposes and active RFID systems for local-area location and identification purposes. VeriChip recently began to market its VeriMed™ Patient Identification System for rapidly and accurately identifying people who arrive in an emergency room and are unable to communicate. This system uses the first human-implantable passive RFID microchip, the implantable VeriChip™, cleared for medical use in October 2004 by the United States Food and Drug Administration.

VeriChip Corporation is majority-owned by Applied Digital Inc. (Nasdaq:ADSX), which also owns a majority position in Digital Angel Corporation (Amex:DOC). For more information on VeriChip, please call 1-800- 970-2447, or email info@verichipcorp.com. Additional information can be found online at http://www.verichipcorp.com.

Statements about the Company's future expectations, including future revenues and earnings, and all other statements in this press release other than historical facts are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and as that term is defined in the Private Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time, and the Company's actual results could differ materially from expected results. The Company undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect subsequently occurring events or circumstances.

http://home.businesswire.com/portal/site/g...amp;newsLang=en
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post Jun 24 2007, 06:40 PM
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Firm unveils GPS RFID tag

Jun 12 2007 5:16PM

18177781-Satellite_8000131_18177781_0_0_978_300.jpg A radio frequency identification (RFID) tag which uses global positioning system (GPS) technology to ascertain specific location data of an item has been unveiled.

Identec Solutions has developed the GPS Tag, which it claims is the most advanced RFID tag on the current market and is "independently intelligent".

The tag uses satellite data with RFID technology to monitor its movement, potentially enabling complete identification of an asset's location.

It also has a range of 500 metres and can be used in conjunction with a reader to be activated at any time.

According to Peter Linke, executive vice president of sales and marketing at Identec, the system will provide "the most complete asset tracking solution possible".

He added: "[It is] a groundbreaking solution so advanced that applications for the technology are virtually endless."

GPS satellites are positioned approximately 12,600 miles above the earth.

TUV Product Service, part of the TÜV SÜD Group of companies with 1bn Euros turnover, in excess of 9,500 employees and 500 locations worldwide, is a leading producer of Compliance and Assurance Solutions for the RFID sector. Please contact us (info@tuvps.co.uk) for further information.

http://www.tuvps.co.uk/news/articles/firm-...ag-18177781.asp
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post Jun 28 2007, 08:17 AM
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Storing Medical Info Under Your Skin

by Staff Writers
Chicago (AFP) June 25, 2007
Doctors could soon be storing essential medical information under the skin of their patients, the American Medical Association says. Devices the size of a grain of rice that are implanted with a needle could give emergency room doctors quick access to the records of chronically ill patients, the nation's largest doctors group said in a report.

The association adopted a policy Monday stating that the devices can improve the "safety and efficiency of patient care" by helping to identify patients and enabling secure access to clinical information.

These radio frequency identification tags (RFIDs) are already used by Wal-Mart and other businesses to speed up their shipping systems by sending out small signals that can be scanned more easily than bar codes.

Implanting them in people "can improve the continuity and coordination of care with resulting reductions in adverse drug events and other medical errors," said the report prepared by the association's ethics committee.

But the devices "also may pose some physical risks, compromise patient privacy, or present other social hazards."

The main concern is protecting the privacy of the information stored on the devices.

There are also health concerns.

While the devices are removable and designed to stay in place, their small size could allow them to move to other parts of a person's body.

They may also cause interference with electrical devices like defibrillators and it has not been determined what impact they would have on prescription drugs.

The report concluded that it is "likely that utilization of RFID devices for medical purposes will expand."

The US Food and Drug Administration has so far only approved "passive" tags for human implantation which cannot be altered once inserted and have a limited capacity and transmission range.

The devices are also only allowed to contain a unique identification code in order to protect patient privacy.

The FDA may eventually approve "active" devices which contain internal batteries and can be updated as a patient's condition changes.

The association warned of "potential social consequences" such as using the devices for surveillance which could be an infringement on individual liberties.

It recommended that the devices not be implanted without the informed consent of patients and that doctors monitor their use.

Source: Agence France-Presse

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Storing_...r_Skin_999.html
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post Jun 28 2007, 09:40 AM
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Airport fingerprint program expanding
By CONSTANT BRAND, Associated Press Writer Tue Jun 26, 10:57 AM ET

BRUSSELS, Belgium - A program being launched at 10 U.S. airports this year will expand existing identification checks for visitors, including requiring 10 digital fingerprints, but still operate under strict privacy rules, a senior U.S. official said Monday.

The border checks could also soon include other biometric data, such as facial and eye retina scans, as the U.S. upgrades security at its ports, airports and border crossings, said P.T. Wright, operations director for the Department of Homeland Security's US-VISIT Program.

Wright, who was in Brussels to explain the new system to EU officials, said the pilot project would be launched later this year, expanding the current program that calls for taking two fingerprints and facial photographs of visitors to the United States.

The pilot program will affect travelers from countries participating in the U.S. Visa Waiver Program, as well as those coming from nations where visas are required, he said.

Airports chosen for the pilot project include Boston Logan International, Chicago's O'Hare, George Bush Houston Intercontinental, Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International, Miami International, John F. Kennedy International, Orlando International, San Francisco International and Washington Dulles International.

European Union data protection officials have raised privacy concerns in the past about the U.S. system and a similar fingerprint system being set up by EU nations.

Wright said data would be collected on visitors under strict U.S. privacy protection rules. But he added the prints are checked against U.S. security watch lists and that the FBI and the CIA also have access to the prints.

The 10-print scans would be "virtually 100 percent match accurate," he said.

"We are going to know that that's you," Wright said. Adding other biometric identifiers — such as facial or retinal scans — could help better rule out fraud, he said.

The current two-fingerprint arrival system is being used in 115 airports, 15 seaports and 154 land border checks. About 100 million fingerprints have been taken so far, and more than 34,000 people whose names showed up on U.S. watch lists were denied entry, Wright said.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap_travel/20070626...avel_security_1
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post Jun 28 2007, 11:54 AM
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THE "CASHLESS" IMPLANT SOCIETY DRAWS CLOSER

http://www.newswithviews.com/Cumbey/constance7.htm
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post Jul 5 2007, 08:19 AM
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Wear your chip or eat it
SHELLEY SINGH

TIMES NEWS NETWORK[ SUNDAY, JUNE 24, 2007 12:15:54 AM]
Care to eat chips — not the potato ones in colourful packaging and different flavours but the digital ones, info rich variety! For starters, swallow this: If you happen to be among the select VIP members of the Baja Beach Club, one of Barcelona’s hottest night spots, you’ll not only be in the company of some very exclusive people, but also among the few with an implantable microchip. The chip was club owner Conrad Chase’s idea of offering a unique identity to the club’s VIP patrons.

Slightly larger than a grain of rice, the chip is used to identify people when they enter and pay for drinks. It is injected by a nurse under a local anesthetic. It is an RFID tag — radio frequency identification. RFID tags are miniscule microchips which listen for a radio query and respond by transmitting their unique ID code. Most RFID tags have no batteries: They use the power from the initial radio signal to transmit their response.

At the Baja Club if a special tag-reader is waved near the arm, a radio signal prompts the chip to transmit an identification number which is used to access information about the wearer from a database. Otherwise the chip is dormant. But its applications are wider.

The Baja club members are not the only users of such geeky stuff. Very soon most people might have some kind of a chip implanted in them, as a means to identify, deliver medicines, monitor health, give access to secure areas and also functions as digital door locks.

Just recently Kodak filed a patent for edible RFID chips. They’re designed for monitoring a patient’s gastric tract. The chips are covered in a harmless gelatin, which eventually dissolves. These RFID chips embed deep in the body and can be read by a scanner. After swallowing a tag a patient need only sit next to a radio source and receiver.

Kodak says that similar radio tags could also be embedded in an artificial knee or hip joint in such a way that they disintegrate as the joint does, warning of the need for surgery. Attaching tags to ordinary pills could also help nurses confirm that a patient has really taken their medicine as ordered.

VeriChip, another American company provides chips to hospitals to manage patients. It also provided chips to the Baja Club. An Israeli company Given Imaging has developed PillCam, a tiny two-sided camera the size of a large pill which patients swallow. It has been used for gastro-intestinal endoscopy tests to diagnose disorders of the oesophagus and the small intestine.

It takes pictures and sends them wirelessly to a recorder worn on the patient’s waist. The images are downloaded to a computer for diagnosis. The $450 capsule passes through the bowel naturally and is flushed down the toilet.

All this is part of what experts like to call “intra-body wireless communications”. In this more than one chip could be embedded in humans and these chips relay information to each other or to a receiver without interference, just as a radio can be tuned to different stations. So in diabetics, for example, an implanted glucose-level reader in one part of the body can communicate with an implanted insulin-pump elsewhere.

With such new innovations it will be more common in future to have some wireless devices which are ingested, implanted or simply attached to the body and linked to a network. It is still early days, but a wireless future with edible chips is clearly looming large on the horizon.

Smart Tech is a new fortnightly column which will look at developments in the personal technology space. Send in your feedback at

shelley.singh@timesgroup.com

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/Magazi...how/2144224.cms
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post Jul 13 2007, 08:19 PM
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U.S. is building database on Iraqis

BAGHDAD — The U.S. military is taking fingerprints and eye scans from thousands of Iraqi men and building an unprecedented database that helps track suspected militants.

U.S. troops are stopping Iraqis at checkpoints, workplaces and sites where attacks have recently occurred, and inputting their personal data using handheld scanners or specially equipped laptops. In several neighborhoods in and around Baghdad, troops have gone door to door collecting data.

The rapidly expanding program has raised privacy concerns at the Pentagon, although it has met little resistance from Iraqis. U.S. commanders say the data help to keep suspected militants out of neighborhoods and to identify suspects in attacks against U.S. troops and Iraqi civilians. Iraq has no other reliable ID system.

"It helps enormously," Gen. David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, said in an interview. "It enables us to identify individuals connected with various activities."

This year, U.S. troops in Iraq are to receive 3,800 handheld scanners, up from 200 now in use, to equip every squad in the country, said Col. Michael Meese, an adviser to Petraeus. The devices can both collect and display data, letting troops view someone's background and decide whether he should be detained.

"If we see some guy at the site of a blast or a shooting, we put him in the database," said Capt. John Henry Moltz of the Army's 3rd Infantry Division. "If we find he's at every blast, now we've got probable cause to question him."

The program recently expanded to the Baghdad area after beginning in 2004 in Anbar province. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis there submitted fingerprint and iris scans — also known as biometric data — and were given ID cards to present at checkpoints. "This is about denying insurgents access to the communities," Lt. Col. Jeff Smitherman said.

From 5,000 to 10,000 Baghdad residents have been scanned since March, said Capt. Curtis Kellogg, a military spokesman. Military units in Baghdad are starting to give ID cards to police and security workers.

Each handheld scanner costs $6,500 and can store records of up to 10,000 people. Information is downloaded from the scanners and forwarded to a central database, Meese said.

The main database also includes records of Iraqis who have been detained or who work in U.S. facilities or for the Iraqi army or police. The data are compared to fingerprints lifted from the scenes of roadside bombings and other attacks to find potential suspects.

Using fingerprints and eye scans to find suspicious people is "the bane of privacy advocates," the Defense Science Board, a Pentagon research arm, said in a March report. Military use of such data can be particularly invasive because it creates government databases of private citizens, the report said.

Iraqis who refuse to give data can be barred from neighborhoods or markets that require an ID for entry. But "virtually nobody refuses," Meese said.

Fayath Abas, 41, said he didn't mind giving his fingerprints at a checkpoint in Fallujah. "We can find out who is bad and who is good," he said.

http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/iraq/20...-database_N.htm
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Microchip Implants Raise Privacy Concern

Jul 21, 12:19 PM (ET)

By TODD LEWAN

CityWatcher.com, a provider of surveillance equipment, attracted little notice itself - until a year ago, when two of its employees had glass-encapsulated microchips with miniature antennas embedded in their forearms.

The "chipping" of two workers with RFIDs - radio frequency identification tags as long as two grains of rice, as thick as a toothpick - was merely a way of restricting access to vaults that held sensitive data and images for police departments, a layer of security beyond key cards and clearance codes, the company said.

"To protect high-end secure data, you use more sophisticated techniques," Sean Darks, chief executive of the Cincinnati-based company, said. He compared chip implants to retina scans or fingerprinting. "There's a reader outside the door; you walk up to the reader, put your arm under it, and it opens the door."

Innocuous? Maybe.

But the news that Americans had, for the first time, been injected with electronic identifiers to perform their jobs fired up a debate over the proliferation of ever-more-precise tracking technologies and their ability to erode privacy in the digital age.

To some, the microchip was a wondrous invention - a high-tech helper that could increase security at nuclear plants and military bases, help authorities identify wandering Alzheimer's patients, allow consumers to buy their groceries, literally, with the wave of a chipped hand.

To others, the notion of tagging people was Orwellian, a departure from centuries of history and tradition in which people had the right to go and do as they pleased, without being tracked, unless they were harming someone else.

Chipping, these critics said, might start with Alzheimer's patients or Army Rangers, but would eventually be suggested for convicts, then parolees, then sex offenders, then illegal aliens - until one day, a majority of Americans, falling into one category or another, would find themselves electronically tagged.

The concept of making all things traceable isn't alien to Americans. Thirty years ago, the first electronic tags were fixed to the ears of cattle, to permit ranchers to track a herd's reproductive and eating habits. In the 1990s, millions of chips were implanted in livestock, fish, dogs, cats, even racehorses.

Microchips are now fixed to car windshields as toll-paying devices, on "contactless" payment cards (Chase's "Blink," or MasterCard's "PayPass"). They're embedded in Michelin tires, library books, passports, work uniforms, luggage, and, unbeknownst to many consumers, on a host of individual items, from Hewlett Packard printers to Sanyo TVs, at Wal-Mart and Best Buy.

But CityWatcher.com employees weren't appliances or pets: They were people made scannable.

"It was scary that a government contractor that specialized in putting surveillance cameras on city streets was the first to incorporate this technology in the workplace," says Liz McIntyre, co-author of "Spychips: How Major Corporations and Government Plan to Track Your Every Move with RFID."

Darks, the CityWatcher.com executive, dismissed his critics, noting that he and his employees had volunteered to be chip-injected. Any suggestion that a sinister, Big-Brother-like campaign was afoot, he said, was hogwash.

"You would think that we were going around putting chips in people by force," he told a reporter, "and that's not the case at all."

Yet, within days of the company's announcement, civil libertarians and Christian conservatives joined to excoriate the microchip's implantation in people.

RFID, they warned, would soon enable the government to "frisk" citizens electronically - an invisible, undetectable search performed by readers posted at "hotspots" along roadsides and in pedestrian areas. It might even be used to squeal on employees while they worked; time spent at the water cooler, in the bathroom, in a designated smoking area could one day be broadcast, recorded and compiled in off-limits, company databases.

"Ultimately," says Katherine Albrecht, a privacy advocate who specializes in consumer education and RFID technology, "the fear is that the government or your employer might someday say, 'Take a chip or starve.'"

Some Christian critics saw the implants as the fulfillment of a biblical prophecy that describes an age of evil in which humans are forced to take the "Mark of the Beast" on their bodies, to buy or sell anything.

Gary Wohlscheid, president of These Last Days Ministries, a Roman Catholic group in Lowell, Mich., put together a Web site that linked the implantable microchips to the apocalyptic prophecy in the book of Revelation.

"The Bible tells us that God's wrath will come to those who take the Mark of the Beast," he says. Those who refuse to accept the Satanic chip "will be saved," Wohlscheid offers in a comforting tone.

---

In post-9/11 America, electronic surveillance comes in myriad forms: in a gas station's video camera; in a cell phone tucked inside a teen's back pocket; in a radio tag attached to a supermarket shopping cart; in a Porsche automobile equipped with a LoJack anti-theft device.

"We're really on the verge of creating a surveillance society in America, where every movement, every action - some would even claim, our very thoughts - will be tracked, monitored, recorded and correlated," says Barry Steinhardt, director of the Technology and Liberty Program at the American Civil Liberties Union in Washington, D.C.

RFID, in Steinhardt's opinion, "could play a pivotal role in creating that surveillance society."

In design, the tag is simple: A medical-grade glass capsule holds a silicon computer chip, a copper antenna and a "capacitor" that transmits data stored on the chip when prompted by an electromagnetic reader.

Implantations are quick, relatively simple procedures. After a local anesthetic is administered, a large-gauge hypodermic needle injects the chip under the skin on the back of the arm, midway between the elbow and the shoulder.

"It feels just like getting a vaccine - a bit of pressure, no specific pain," says John Halamka, an emergency physician at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston.

He got chipped two years ago, "so that if I was ever in an accident, and arrived unconscious or incoherent at an emergency ward, doctors could identify me and access my medical history quickly." (A chipped person's medical profile can be continuously updated, since the information is stored on a database accessed via the Internet.)

Halamka thinks of his microchip as another technology with practical value, like his BlackBerry. But it's also clear, he says, that there are consequences to having an implanted identifier.

"My friends have commented to me that I'm 'marked' for life, that I've lost my anonymity. And to be honest, I think they're right."

Indeed, as microchip proponents and detractors readily agree, Americans' mistrust of microchips and technologies like RFID runs deep. Many wonder:

Do the current chips have global positioning transceivers that would allow the government to pinpoint a person's exact location, 24-7? (No; the technology doesn't yet exist.)

But could a tech-savvy stalker rig scanners to video cameras and film somebody each time they entered or left the house? (Quite easily, though not cheaply. Currently, readers cost $300 and up.)

How about thieves? Could they make their own readers, aim them at unsuspecting individuals, and surreptitiously pluck people's IDs out of their arms? (Yes. There's even a name for it - "spoofing.")

What's the average lifespan of a microchip? (About 10-15 years.) What if you get tired of it before then - can it be easily, painlessly removed? (Short answer: No.)

Presently, Steinhardt and other privacy advocates view the tagging of identity documents - passports, drivers licenses and the like - as a more pressing threat to Americans' privacy than the chipping of people. Equipping hospitals, doctors' offices, police stations and government agencies with readers will be costly, training staff will take time, and, he says, "people are going to be too squeamish about having an RFID chip inserted into their arms, or wherever."

But that wasn't the case in March 2004, when the Baja Beach Club in Barcelona, Spain - a nightclub catering to the body-aware, under-25 crowd - began holding "Implant Nights."

In a white lab coat, with hypodermic in latex-gloved hand, a company chipper wandered through the throng of the clubbers and clubbettes, anesthetizing the arms of consenting party goers, then injecting them with microchips.

The payoff?

Injectees would thereafter be able to breeze past bouncers and entrance lines, magically open doors to VIP lounges, and pay for drinks without cash or credit cards. The ID number on the VIP chip was linked to the user's financial accounts and stored in the club's computers.

After being chipped himself, club owner Conrad K. Chase declared that chip implants were hardly a big deal to his patrons, since "almost everybody has piercings, tattoos or silicone."

VIP chipping soon spread to the Baja Beach Club in Rotterdam, Holland, the Bar Soba in Edinburgh, Scotland, and the Amika nightclub in Miami Beach, Fla.

That same year, Mexico's attorney general, Rafael Macedo, made an announcement that thrilled chip proponents and chilled privacy advocates: He and 18 members of his staff had been microchipped as a way to limit access to a sensitive records room, whose door unlocked when a "portal reader" scanned the chips.

But did this make Mexican security airtight?

Hardly, says Jonathan Westhues, an independent security researcher in Cambridge, Mass. He concocted an "emulator," a hand-held device that cloned the implantable microchip electronically. With a team of computer-security experts, he demonstrated - on television - how easy it was to snag data off a chip.

Explains Adam Stubblefield, a Johns Hopkins researcher who joined the team: "You pass within a foot of a chipped person, copy the chip's code, then with a push of the button, replay the same ID number to any reader. You essentially assume the person's identity."

The company that makes implantable microchips for humans, VeriChip Corp. (CHIP), of Delray Beach, Fla., concedes the point - even as it markets its radio tag and its portal scanner as imperatives for high-security buildings, such as nuclear power plants.

"To grab information from radio frequency products with a scanning device is not hard to do," Scott Silverman, the company's chief executive, says. However, "the chip itself only contains a unique, 16-digit identification number. The relevant information is stored on a database."

Even so, he insists, it's harder to clone a VeriChip than it would be to steal someone's key card and use it to enter secure areas.

VeriChip Corp., whose parent company has been selling radio tags for animals for more than a decade, has sold 7,000 microchips worldwide, of which about 2,000 have been implanted in humans. More than one-tenth of those have been in the U.S., generating "nominal revenues," the company acknowledged in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing in February.

Although in five years VeriChip Corp. has yet to turn a profit, it has been investing heavily - up to $2 million a quarter - to create new markets.

The company's present push: tagging of "high-risk" patients - diabetics and people with heart conditions or Alzheimer's disease.

In an emergency, hospital staff could wave a reader over a patient's arm, get an ID number, and then, via the Internet, enter a company database and pull up the person's identity and medical history.

To doctors, a "starter kit" - complete with 10 hypodermic syringes, 10 VeriChips and a reader - costs $1,400. To patients, a microchip implant means a $200, out-of-pocket expense to their physician. Presently, chip implants aren't covered by insurance companies, Medicare or Medicaid.

For almost two years, the company has been offering hospitals free scanners, but acceptance has been limited. According to the company's most recent SEC quarterly filing, 515 hospitals have pledged to take part in the VeriMed network, yet only 100 have actually been equipped and trained to use the system.

Some wonder why they should abandon noninvasive tags such as MedicAlert, a low-tech bracelet that warns paramedics if patients have serious allergies or a chronic medical condition.

"Having these things under your skin instead of in your back pocket - it's just not clear to me why it's worth the inconvenience," says Westhues.

Silverman responds that an implanted chip is "guaranteed to be with you. It's not a medical arm bracelet that you can take off if you don't like the way it looks..."

In fact, microchips can be removed from the body - but it's not like removing a splinter.

The capsules can migrate around the body or bury themselves deep in the arm. When that happens, a sensor X-ray and monitors are needed to locate the chip, and a plastic surgeon must cut away scar tissue that forms around the chip.

The relative permanence is a big reason why Marc Rotenberg, of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, is suspicious about the motives of the company, which charges an annual fee to keep clients' records.

The company charges $20 a year for customers to keep a "one-pager" on its database - a record of blood type, allergies, medications, driver's license data and living-will directives. For $80 a year, it will keep an individual's full medical history.

---

In recent times, there have been rumors on Wall Street, and elsewhere, of the potential uses for RFID in humans: the chipping of U.S. soldiers, of inmates, or of migrant workers, to name a few.

To date, none of this has happened.

But a large-scale chipping plan that was proposed illustrates the stakes, pro and con.

In mid-May, a protest outside the Alzheimer's Community Care Center in West Palm Beach, Fla., drew attention to a two-year study in which 200 Alzheimer's patients, along with their caregivers, were to receive chip implants. Parents, children and elderly people decried the plan, with signs and placards.

"Chipping People Is Wrong" and "People Are Not Pets," the signs read. And: "Stop VeriChip."

Ironically, the media attention sent VeriChip's stock soaring 27 percent in one day.

"VeriChip offers technology that is absolutely bursting with potential," wrote blogger Gary E. Sattler, of the AOL site Bloggingstocks, even as he recognized privacy concerns.

Albrecht, the RFID critic who organized the demonstration, raises similar concerns on her AntiChips.com Web site.

"Is it appropriate to use the most vulnerable members of society for invasive medical research? Should the company be allowed to implant microchips into people whose mental impairments mean they cannot give fully informed consent?"

Mary Barnes, the care center's chief executive, counters that both the patients and their legal guardians must consent to the implants before receiving them. And the chips, she says, could be invaluable in identifying lost patients - for instance, if a hurricane strikes Florida.

That, of course, assumes that the Internet would be accessible in a killer storm. VeriChip Corp. acknowledged in an SEC filing that its "database may not function properly" in such circumstances.

As the polemic heats up, legislators are increasingly being drawn into the fray. Two states, Wisconsin and North Dakota, recently passed laws prohibiting the forced implantation of microchips in humans. Others - Ohio, Oklahoma, Colorado and Florida - are studying similar legislation.

In May, Oklahoma legislators were debating a bill that would have authorized microchip implants in people imprisoned for violent crimes. Many felt it would be a good way to monitor felons once released from prison.

But other lawmakers raised concerns. Rep. John Wright worried, "Apparently, we're going to permanently put the mark on these people."

Rep. Ed Cannaday found the forced microchipping of inmates "invasive ... We are going down that slippery slope."

In the end, lawmakers sent the bill back to committee for more work.

http://apnews.myway.com/article/20070721/D8QH34P80.html
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post Jul 24 2007, 04:07 PM
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Microchips mulled for HIV carriers in Indonesia's Papua
Jul 24 03:57 AM US/Eastern

Lawmakers in Indonesia's Papua are mulling the selective use of chip implants in HIV carriers to monitor their behaviour in a bid to keep them from infecting others, a doctor said Tuesday.

John Manangsang, a doctor who is helping to prepare a new healthcare regulation bill for Papua's provincial parliament, said that unusual measures were needed to combat the virus.

"We in the government in Papua have to think hard on ways to provide protection to people from the spread of the disease," Manangsang told AFP.

"Some of the infected people experience a change of behaviour and can turn more aggressive and would not think twice of infecting others," he alleged, saying lawmakers were considering various sanctions for these people.

"Among one of the means being considered is the monitoring of those infected people who can pose a danger to others," Manangsang said.

"The use of chip implants is one of the ways to do so, but only for those few who turn aggressive and clearly continue to disregard what they know about the disease and spread the virus to others," he said.

A decision was still a long way off, he added.

The head of the Papua chapter of the National AIDS Commission, Constant Karma, reportedly slammed the proposal as a violation of human rights.

"People with HIV/AIDS are not like sharks under observation so that they have to be implanted with microchips to monitor their movements," he told the Jakarta Post on Tuesday.

"Any form of identification of people with HIV/AIDS violates human rights."

According to data from Papua's health office cited by the Post, the province has just over 3,000 people living with HIV/AIDS. Some 356 deaths have been reported. Papua has a population of about 2.5 million.

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=07...;show_article=1
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post Aug 2 2007, 08:17 AM
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Clemson University To Develop Implantable Biochip For Department Of Defense

by Staff Writers
Clemson SC (SPX) Jul 31, 2007
The Department of Defense has awarded $1.6 million to the Center for Bioelectronics, Biosensors and Biochips (C3B) at Clemson University for the development of an implantable biochip that could relay vital health information if a soldier is wounded in battle or a civilian is hurt in an accident. The biochip, about the size of a grain of rice, could measure and relay such information as lactate and glucose levels in the event of a major hemorrhage, whether on the battlefield, at home or on the highway.

Anthony Guiseppi-Elie, C3B director and Dow Chemical Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and professor of bioengineering says first responders to the trauma scene could inject the biochip into the wounded victim and gather data almost immediately. The device has other long-term potential applications, such as monitoring astronauts' vital signs during long-duration space flights and reading blood-sugar levels for diabetics.

"We now lose a large percentage of patients to bleeding, and getting vital information such as how much oxygen is in the tissue back to ER physicians and medical personnel can often mean the difference between life and death," said Guiseppi-Elie. "Our goal is to improve the quality and expediency of care for fallen soldiers and civilian trauma victims." The biochip also may be injected as a precaution to future traumas, he adds.

Clemson scientists have formulated a gel that mimics human tissue and reduces the chances of the body rejecting the biochip, which has been a problem in the past. The researcher predicts the biochip is five years away from human trials. The award is funded by the Department of Defense through the Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program and is a joint study with the department of molecular pathology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and Telesensors Inc. in Knoxville, Tenn.

The Center for Bioelectronics, Biosensors and Biochips, located in the Clemson University Advanced Materials Center, operates cooperatively with industry in molecular bioanalytics and biometrology research. The center focuses on the development of platform technologies that are of mutual interest to the industrial consortium members and faculty while providing education and training for science-, technology-, engineering- and mathematics-oriented high school students, science teachers, undergraduates, graduate students and post-doctoral trainees.

http://www.interndaily.com/reports/Clemson...efense_999.html
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Alzheimer's Patients Lining Up for Microchip
The VeriChip Provides Medical Information About Patients, but Privacy Advocates Are Wary

For families of the nearly 5 million Americans currently living with Alzheimer's disease, keeping their loved ones safe is a major concern.

In response to such concerns, a Florida-based company has developed an FDA-approved microchip that can be implanted in an Alzheimer's patient's arm, allowing critical medical details to be accessed instantly.

Up to 200 Alzheimer's patients living near Palm Beach, Fla., will be implanted with the VeriChip for free in the next week.

The chip, which is about the size of a grain of rice, contains a 16-digit identification number which is scanned at a hospital. Once the number is placed in a database, it can provide crucial medical information.

People are already lining up for the VeriChip, but it's already stirred up controversy.

Is Big Brother Watching?

David and Ida Frankel have been married an unbelievable 73 years. Seven years ago, Ida was diagnosed with Alzheimer's.

"She was being very forgetful, repeating questions over and over again," David said.

Ida was one of the first patients at an Alzheimer's center in Florida to be implanted with a VeriChip.

"When an Alzheimer's patient gets lost, once their arm is scanned, it would identify who they are and that they are an Alzheimer's patient," said Scott Silverman, the CEO of VeriChip.

Silverman stressed that the VeriChip is not a GPS device; it only provides code for a database.

Some privacy groups argue that the VeriChip, which uses the same technology as devices that track wayward pets, strips Alzheimer's patients of their dignity.

"I don't think that because it's useful in animals is a reason why we should do it in human beings," said Katherine Albrecht, the founder of AntiChip.com. "There is a distinction between an animal and a human being."

http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/OnCall/story?id=3536539
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Brain chip reads man's thoughts
Image of the brain
The "chip" reads brain signals
A paralysed man in the US has become the first person to benefit from a brain chip that reads his mind.

Matthew Nagle, 25, was left paralysed from the neck down and confined to a wheelchair after a knife attack in 2001.

The pioneering surgery at New England Sinai Hospital, Massachusetts, last summer means he can now control everyday objects by thought alone.

The brain chip reads his mind and sends the thoughts to a computer to decipher.

Mind over matter

He can think his TV on and off, change channels and alter the volume thanks to the technology and software linked to devices in his home.

Scientists have been working for some time to devise a way to enable paralysed people to control devices with the brain.

Studies have shown that monkeys can control a computer with electrodes implanted into their brain.

Recently four people, two of them partly paralysed wheelchair users, were able to move a computer cursor while wearing a cap with 64 electrodes that pick up brain waves.

Mr Nagle's device, called BrainGate, consists of nearly 100 hair-thin electrodes implanted a millimetre deep into part of the motor cortex of his brain that controls movement.

Wires feed the information from the electrodes into a computer which analyses the brain signals.

The signals are interpreted and translated into cursor movements, offering the user an alternative way to control devices such as a computer with thought.

Motor control

Professor John Donoghue, an expert on neuroscience at Brown University, Rhode Island, is the scientist behind the device produced by Cyberkinetics.

He said: "The computer screen is basically a TV remote control panel, and in order to indicate a selection he merely has to pass the cursor over an icon, and that's equivalent to a click when he goes over that icon."

Mr Nagle has also been able to use thought to move a prosthetic hand and robotic arm to grab sweets from one person's hand and place them into another.

Professor Donoghue hopes that ultimately implants such as this will allow people with paralysis to regain the use of their limbs.

The long term aim is to design a package the size of a mobile phone that will run on batteries, and to electrically stimulate the patient's own muscles. This will be difficult.

The simple movements we took for granted involved complex electrical signals which would be hard to replicate, Dr Richard Apps, a neurophysiologist from Bristol University, UK, told the BBC News website.

He said there were millions of neurones in the brain involved with movement. The brain chip taps into only a very small number of these. But he said the work was extremely exciting.

"It's quite remarkable. They have taken research to the next stage to have a clear benefit for a patient that otherwise would not be able to move.

"It seems that they have cracked the crucial step and arguably the most challenging step to get hand movements.

"Just to be able to grasp an object is a major step forward."

He said it might be possible to hone this further to achieve finer movements of the hand.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/4396387.stm
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Microchip maker 'hid ties to cancer'
Company didn't tell public of studies linking sub-skin device to rat tumors
Posted: September 9, 2007
8:28 p.m. Eastern
© 2007 WorldNetDaily.com

Implantable VeriChip, about the size of a grain of rice

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. – The safety of implantable tracking chips in human beings is suddenly in focus with the revelation the devices could cause cancer, and that studies showing links to the disease were kept under wraps.

According to the Associated Press, despite the chips' approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, neither their maker nor federal regulators publicly mentioned a series of studies dating to the mid-1990s that found chip implants had "induced" malignant tumors in some lab mice and rats.

"The transponders were the cause of the tumors," Keith Johnson, a retired toxicologic pathologist, told AP as he explained the findings of a 1996 study he led at the Dow Chemical Co. in Midland, Mich.

The wire service says leading cancer specialists reviewed the research, and "while cautioning that animal test results do not necessarily apply to humans, said the findings troubled them. Some said they would not allow family members to receive implants, and all urged further research before the glass-encased transponders are widely implanted in people."

The chips are made by VeriChip Corp., a division of Applied Digital Solutions, of Delray Beach, Fla.

The company says some 2,000 have been implanted in humans worldwide, and VeriChip sees a target market of 45 million Americans looking to be medically monitored.

"We stand by our implantable products which have been approved by the FDA and/or other U.S. regulatory authorities," Scott Silverman, VeriChip Corp. chairman and chief executive officer, said in a written response to AP questions.

The company was "not aware of any studies that have resulted in malignant tumors in laboratory rats, mice and certainly not dogs or cats," but he added millions of domestic pets have been implanted with microchips, without reports of significant problems.

"In fact, for more than 15 years we have used our encapsulated glass transponders with FDA approved anti-migration caps and received no complaints regarding malignant tumors caused by our product."

While the FDA is also standing by its approval of the technology, federal officials declined repeated AP requests to specify what studies it reviewed before giving the green light.

The FDA is overseen by the Department of Health and Human Services, which, at the time of VeriChip's approval, was headed by Tommy Thompson.


Tommy Thompson

Just two weeks after the chip's approval took effect on Jan. 10, 2005, Thompson left his Cabinet post. Within five months, he became a board member of VeriChip Corp. and Applied Digital Solutions, getting compensated in cash and stock options.

Thompson, until recently a candidate for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination, says he had no personal relationship with the company as the VeriChip was being evaluated, nor did he play any role in FDA's approval process of the RFID tag, reports AP.

"I didn't even know VeriChip before I stepped down from the Department of Health and Human Services," he said.

As WND previously reported, Thompson pledged that he himself would get chipped with the device, but to date has never gone through with the procedure.

The studies between 1996 and 2006 revealed lab mice that had the chips implanted in them developed malignant tumors, most of which encased the implants. The AP reports:

* A 1998 study in Ridgefield, Conn., of 177 mice reported cancer incidence to be slightly higher than 10 percent — a result the researchers described as "surprising."

* A 2006 study in France detected tumors in 4.1 percent of 1,260 microchipped mice. This was one of six studies in which the scientists did not set out to find microchip-induced cancer but noticed the growths incidentally. They were testing compounds on behalf of chemical and pharmaceutical companies; but they ruled out the compounds as the tumors' cause. Because researchers only noted the most obvious tumors, the French study said, "These incidences may therefore slightly underestimate the true occurrence" of cancer.

* In 1997, a study in Germany found cancers in 1 percent of 4,279 chipped mice. The tumors "are clearly due to the implanted microchips," the authors wrote.

"There's no way in the world, having read this information, that I would have one of those chips implanted in my skin, or in one of my family members," Dr. Robert Benezra, head of the Cancer Biology Genetics Program at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, told AP.

"I mean, these are bad diseases. They are life-threatening. And given the preliminary animal data, it looks to me that there's definitely cause for concern."

http://wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=57557
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post Sep 23 2007, 12:53 PM
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Biometric identity system called 'success' in Iraq
BAGHDAD — Iraq has turned to a biometrics identification system to prevent the infiltration of insurgents in the Baghdad government.

Officials said Baghdad has established a database that has been expanding weekly.

Biometrics uses physical or behavioral characteristics to identify people. More than 350,000 sets of fingerprints, photos and retina scans have been deposited in the Iraqi system's database.

Officials said Baghdad, with U.S. assistance, has been operating an automated system to screen civilian workers, police and soldiers, as well as to identify criminals in the military and government.

"It has been a tremendous success," said U.S. Army Lt. Col. John Velliquette, who runs the fingerprint and retina scanning center in Baghdad's International Zone.

"We increase the database by 4,000 to 5,000 each week," Velliquette said.

Officials said the U.S. military has been training Iraqis to operate the biometrics system. They said seven U.S. contractors were mentoring 24 Iraqi government employees to operate the system.

By the summer of 2008, Iraq would solely operate the system, linked to Defense Department's Biometric Fusion Center, in Clarksburg, W. Va. Officials said the system has helped secure Baghdad's International Zone, which contains U.S. and Iraqi military and diplomatic headquarters.

Officials said the identification system has been used to identify criminals. They said the system helps ensure that only authorized individuals carry firearms.

The Iraqi government has issued identification cards to Iraqi police vetted through the biometric program. Officials said Iraqi police officers without a proper biometrics identification card were relieved of their weapons.

"The Iraqi people need to have confidence in their police," Velliquette said.

http://www.worldtribune.com/worldtribune/W..._iraq_09_21.asp
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post Dec 11 2007, 09:37 AM
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City Considers Fingerprint Scanners In Police Cruisers
POSTED: 7:07 am EST December 10, 2007
UPDATED: 12:43 pm EST December 10, 2007

WINTER PARK, Fla. -- The city of Winter Park is considering putting 56 portable digital fingerprint scanners into patrol cars.

The scanners would eliminate identity confusion by offering a complete record on the spot.

Police said a person's fingerprint would also virtually eliminate the possibility that officers would arrest the wrong person.
Click here to find out more!

Winter Park's City Commission will vote on the issue Monday.

If the city OKs the purchase of the machines, the portable scanners would be put into place as soon as they arrived in Winter Park, Local 6 reported.

Watch Local 6 News for more on this story.

http://www.local6.com/news/14810358/detail.html
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post Dec 16 2007, 05:59 PM
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DHS unveils Real ID grants
Published on Friday, December 14, 2007.

Source: Washington Technology

The Homeland Security Department released grant guidelines this week to assist states in applying for $35 million to begin implementing Real ID requirements for handling personal information associated with driver’s licenses.

“These funds will advance the ability of states to verify the legitimacy of documents that applicants present and to confirm that the applicants are who they say they are," said Secretary Michael Chertoff.

Under the Real ID Act of 2005, states must meet new rules for collecting, verifying, storing and publishing personal information related to driver’s licenses, and they must share the personal information of license holders with other states. The law has been controversial due to its estimated $14 billion implementation cost and possible risks of privacy loss and identity theft. DHS has not yet published the final regulations for states to follow.

The bulk of the Real ID Demonstration Grant funding, $31 million, is designated for projects that assist states in checking other states’ motor vehicle records to ensure that drivers do not hold multiple licenses and for verification against federal records like immigration status, DHS said.

“This grant will help standardize methods by which states may seamlessly verify an applicant’s information with another state and deploy data and document verification capabilities that can be used by all states, while protecting personal identification information,” DHS said.

DHS will make another $4 million available through the Real ID Vital Events Verification State Project Grant program to help states establish systems to verify birth certificates. The goal is to allow officials in one state to electronically verify birth certificates presented from other states.

The verification grant program will build on a 2006 pilot project in Kentucky to test software to improve verification capabilities. Grants will be made available to states to demonstrate the same or similar software, DHS said.

States that wish to apply for the Real ID grants should explain how their project can be used by other states, DHS said.

For additional support for Real ID, state governments are allowed to use 20 percent of their State Homeland Security Grant allotments for Real ID-related projects.

http://www.washingtontechnology.com/online/1_1/31975-1.html
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post Dec 30 2007, 03:47 PM
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Mexico to Microchip Central American Migrants
http://www.truthnews.us/?p=1455
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post Jan 1 2008, 07:59 AM
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Passport Card Technology Criticized
Dec 31 02:38 PM US/Eastern
By EILEEN SULLIVAN
Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) - Passport cards for Americans who travel to Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and the Caribbean will be equipped with technology that allows information on the card to be read from a distance.

The technology was approved Monday by the State Department and privacy advocates were quick to criticize the department for not doing more to protect information on the card, which can be used by U.S. citizens instead of a passport when traveling to other countries in the western hemisphere.

The technology would allow the cards to be read from up to 20 feet away. This process only takes one or two seconds, said Ann Barrett, deputy assistant secretary for passport services at the State Department. The card would not have to be physically swiped through a reader, as is the current process with passports.

The technology is "inherently insecure and poses threats to personal privacy, including identity theft," Ari Schwartz, of the Center for Democracy and Technology, said in a statement. Schwartz said this specific technology, called "vicinity read," is better suited for tracking inventory, not people.

The State Department said privacy protections will be built into the card. The chip on the card will not contain biographical information, Barrett said.

And the card vendor—which has yet to be decided—will also provide sleeves for the cards that will prevent them from being read from afar, she said.

A 2004 law to strengthen border security called for a passport card that frequent border crossers could use that would be smaller and more convenient than the traditional passport. Currently, officials must swipe travelers' passports through an electronic reader at entry points.

The technology change for passport cards was initially proposed in October 2006, and public comments closed on Jan. 7, 2007. The State Department received more than 4,000 comments, and most were about the security of the technology.

On Jan. 31, land and sea travelers returning to the United States from Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Bermuda will be allowed to present a birth certificate and driver's license in lieu of a passport.

The Bush administration recently delayed a requirement that Americans present passports when crossing the U.S. border by land or sea. Officials expect the rule to require passports to go into effect at the end of next summer.

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D8...;show_article=1
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post Jan 3 2008, 07:16 AM
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"Vicinity Read" Passport Card Technology Approved
Published on Wednesday, January 02, 2008.

Source: Associated Press

WASHINGTON - Passport cards for Americans who travel to Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and the Caribbean will be equipped with technology that allows information on the card to be read from a distance.

The technology was approved Monday by the State Department and privacy advocates were quick to criticize the department for not doing more to protect information on the card, which can be used by U.S. citizens instead of a passport when traveling to other countries in the western hemisphere.

The technology would allow the cards to be read from up to 20 feet away. This process only takes one or two seconds, said Ann Barrett, deputy assistant secretary for passport services at the State Department. The card would not have to be physically swiped through a reader, as is the current process with passports.

The technology is "inherently insecure and poses threats to personal privacy, including identity theft," Ari Schwartz, of the Center for Democracy and Technology, said in a statement. Schwartz said this specific technology, called "vicinity read," is better suited for tracking inventory, not people.

The State Department said privacy protections will be built into the card. The chip on the card will not contain biographical information, Barrett said.

And the card vendor — which has yet to be decided — will also provide sleeves for the cards that will prevent them from being read from afar, she said.

A 2004 law to strengthen border security called for a passport card that frequent border crossers could use that would be smaller and more convenient than the traditional passport. Currently, officials must swipe travelers' passports through an electronic reader at entry points.

The technology change for passport cards was initially proposed in October 2006, and public comments closed on Jan. 7, 2007. The State Department received more than 4,000 comments, and most were about the security of the technology.

On Jan. 31, land and sea travelers returning to the United States from Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Bermuda will no longer be allowed to make an oral declaration of citizenship and must present a birth certificate, driver's license or passport.

To relieve a backlog at U.S. passport offices, the Bush administration recently delayed a requirement that Americans present passports when crossing the U.S. border by land or sea. The administration wanted to begin requiring passports or passport cards in mid-2008, but Congress mandates that the rule not go into effect until summer 2009.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap_travel/20080102...OsOFGo3zz6s0NUE
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