Microchips To Be Implanted In UK Convicts

RFID-based microchips will soon be used to tag prisoners, according to a Ministry of Justice official in the United Kingdom.


(VeriChip RFID tag for human implantation)

I'm assuming that they want to use something like the VeriChip, which is a very small Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tag about the size of a large grain of rice. It can be injected directly into the body; a special coating on the glass case of the chip helps it to bond with living tissue and stay in place. A special RFID reader broadcasts a signal, and the antenna in the VeriChip draws power from the reader and sends its data. The VeriChip is a passive RFID tag; since it does not require a battery, it has a virtually unlimited life span.

Officials want to use the technology to reduce overcrowding in prisons. The tagged prisoners would be released and then tracked.

The UK already makes use of ankle bracelets and other "tethering" technologies, but wants to go high-tech with implanted devices. According to a high-ranking minister:

"We have wanted to take advantage of this technology for several years, because it seems a sensible solution to the problems we are facing in this area.

"We have looked at it and gone back to it and worried about the practicalities and the ethics, but when you look at the challenges facing the criminal justice system, it's time has come."

I kind of liked the comment made by Shami Chakrabarti, director of a UK civil rights group, who said "If the Home Office doesn't understand why implanting a chip in someone is worse than an ankle bracelet, they don't need a human-rights lawyer; they need a common-sense bypass."

Wondering what they will think of next, now that it's easy to tag people? Here are a few examples:

Via Microchip tagging for convicts.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/14/2008)

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Index of related articles:

What is RFID?
How RFID Works
How is RFID used inside a living body?
What can RFID be used for?
Is RFID Technology Secure and Private?
Are There Concerns About How RFID Will Be Used? (Update)
Next-Generation Uses of RFID?
What Are Zombie RFID Tags?
Problems With RFID
RFID Information Technology Articles
Advantages of RFID Versus Barcodes
RFID Glossary
Contactless Credit Card Advantages
Contactless Credit Card Disadvantages

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