[LINK] Fwd: [Politech] RFID tags reportedly found in German loyalty shopping card [priv]

Tom Worthington tomw99 at fastmail.fm
Thu Feb 12 09:58:16 EST 2004

At 2/11/2004 10:01 AM, Roger Clarke wrote:
>>Date: Mon, 09 Feb 2004 01:05:29 -0500
>>To: politech at politechbot.com
>>From: Declan McCullagh <declan at well.com>
>>Subject: [Politech] RFID tags reportedly found in German loyalty shopping
>>  card [priv] ...

What a coincidence. Just released:

                         THE LINK INSTITUTE
                             LINK GRAM


CANBERRA 13 FEBRUARY 2004: A wallet designed to protect the privacy of 
shoppers was launched by the Link Institute today. Known more for its high 
technology than high fashion, the Institute researchers came up with the 
idea after hearing reports of radio frequency ID tags (RFID) being included 
in shopper loyalty cards. The tags allow shoppers to be tracked around a 
store using radio waves. The Institute's invention is a radio wave blocking 
layer built into the shopper's wallet or purse. The layer, known to 
technologists as a "faraday cage" stops the signals from the RFID device 
and so prevents the shopper being tracked.

The prototype wallets are an unattractive black PVC, but Professor 
Klerphel, Director of the Institute, says the technology can be invisibly 
built into leather goods.

The defence department has expressed interest in a military version of the 
wallets to prevent personnel from being tracked by terrorists. "These RFID 
cards pose a real and present danger to the safely of our personnel" said 
LTCOL "Sky" Walker of the 102nd EDCON (Electronic Defence Command). While 
he did not detail the nature of the threat, it is believed that terrorists 
may key a roadside bomb to the frequency of the RFID tag, allowing it to be 
automatically detonated when personnel carrying a card drive past. 
Sensitive military electronic systems are normally "TEMPEST rated" to 
protect them from external eavesdropping, but this system has not been used 
for items such as credit cards.



Tom Worthington FACS tom.worthington at tomw.net.au Ph: 0419 496150
Director, Tomw Communications Pty Ltd ABN: 17 088 714 309
http://www.tomw.net.au PO Box 13, Belconnen ACT 2617 

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