[LINK] Airport to tag passengers

Kim Holburn kim at holburn.net
Fri Oct 13 10:54:41 AEST 2006

It's looking like a small pack of aluminium foil is going to become  
an important travel accessory.

On 2006 Oct 13, at 7:31 AM, Howard Lowndes wrote:

> <hfl>
> Note the stated reading range of these tags
> </hfl>
> http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/10/12/airport_rfid/
> Airport security chiefs and efficiency geeks will be able to keep  
> close tabs on airport passengers by tagging them with a high  
> powered radio chip developed at the University of Central London.
> The technology is to be trialled in Debrecen Airport in Hungary  
> after being in development for two-and-a-half years by University  
> College London as part of an EU-funded consortium called Optag.
> Click here to find out more!
> Dr Paul Brennan, of UCL's antennas and radar group, said his team  
> had developed a radio frequency identification tag far in advance  
> of any that had been used to now to label supermarket produce.
> People will be told to wear radio tags round their necks when they  
> get to the airport. The tag would notify a computer system of their  
> identity and whereabouts. The system would then track their  
> activities in the airport using a network of high definition cameras.
> "[The tags] have got a long range, of 10m to 20m," said Brennan,  
> "and the system has been designed so the tag can be located to  
> within a metre, and it can locate thousands of tags in one area at  
> a given time."
> RFID tags can normally only transmit their presence to readers a  
> few centimetres away, while their location is difficult to grasp.
> The project, called "Improving airport efficiency, security and  
> passenger flow by enhanced passenger monitoring," is using €2m of  
> European funding so airports can herd people through the airport  
> system.
> Colin Brooks, Optag co-ordinator, said the trial would determine if  
> the tags would be feasible in the light of obvious problems, such  
> as the possibility that people might ditch their tags to avoid  
> detection, or swap them with another person.
> One solution might be to require people to use their tags to get  
> through gates placed throughout the airport, he said. Perhaps a  
> little like a shepherd might gate off his pasture and check the  
> tags on his sheep as they passed into this field. ®

Kim Holburn
IT Network & Security Consultant
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