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Microchip implant (human)

For use in animals, see Microchip implant (animal).


fessional partners for installation services.
A human microchip implant is an identifying Mikey Sklar had a chip implanted into his left hand and
lmed the procedure. He has done a number of media[2]
and personal interviews[3] about his experience of being
microchipped.
Martijn Wismeijer, Dutch creator of a bitcoin ATM, has
placed an RFID in his hand to store his Bitcoin private
key.[4]

2 Commercial implants
In 2002, the VeriChip Corporation (known as the
"PositiveID Corporation since November 2009) received preliminary approval from the United States Food
and Drug Administration (FDA) to market its device in
the U.S. within specic guidelines. The device received
FDA approval in 2004, and was marketed under the name
VeriChip or VeriMed. In 2007, it was revealed that nearly
identical implants had caused cancer in hundreds of laboratory animals.[5] The revelation had a devastating impact
on the companys stock price. Some time between May
and July 2010, the Positive ID Corporation discontinued
marketing the implantable human microchip.[6]

The hand of microchip implant expert Amal Graafstra, just after


an operation to insert an RFID tag. The yellow coloration comes
from iodine used to disinfect the hand for surgery.

integrated circuit device or RFID transponder encased in


silicate glass and implanted in the body of a human being.
A subdermal implant typically contains a unique ID number that can be linked to information contained in an external database, such as personal identication, medical
history, medications, allergies, and contact information. In January 2012, the VeriTeQ Acquisition Corporation acquired the VeriChip implantable microchip and
related technologies, and Health Link personal health
record from PositiveID Corporation. VeriTeQ is major1 Hobbyists
ity owned and led by Scott R. Silverman, former Chairman and CEO of PositiveID and VeriChip CorporaThe rst reported experiment with an RFID implant was tion. PositiveID has retained an ownership interest in
carried out in 1998 by the British scientist Kevin War- VeriTeQ.[7]
wick.[1] As a test, his implant was used to open doors,
switch on lights, and cause verbal output within a building. The implant has since been held in the Science Mu- 2.1 Medical records use
seum (London).
The PositiveID Corporation (previously known as The
Since that time, several additional hobbyists have placed VeriChip Corporation; Applied Digital Solutions, Inc.;
RFID microchip implants into their hands or had them and The Digital Angel Corporation) distributed the implaced there by others.
plantable chip known as the VeriChip or VeriMed unAmal Graafstra, author of the book RFID Toys, asked til the product was discontinued in the second quarter of
doctors to place implants in his hands. A cosmetic sur- 2010. The company had suggested that the implant could
geon used a scalpel to place a microchip in his left hand, be used to retrieve medical information in the event of
and his family doctor injected a chip into his right hand an emergency, as follows: Each VeriChip implant conusing a veterinary Avid injector kit. Graafstra uses the tained a 16-digit ID number. This number was transmitimplants to open his home and car doors and to log on ted when a hand-held VeriChip scanner is passed within
to his computer. With public interest growing, he started a few inches of the implant. Participating hospitals and
Dangerous Things in 2013 where anyone can purchase emergency workers would enter this number into a setested and veried safe RFID implants and contact pro- cure page on the VeriChip Corporations website to ac1

POTENTIAL PROBLEMS

cess medical information that the patient had previously 2.3 Possible future applications
stored on le with the company.
According to some reports, in 2006 80 hospitals had Theoretically, a GPS-enabled chip could one day make it
agreed to own a VeriChip scanner provided by the com- possible for individuals to be physically located by latipany and 232 doctors had agreed to inject the devices into tude, longitude, altitude, speed, and direction of movepatients who requested them.[8] However, the VeriChip ment. Such implantable GPS devices are not technically
Corporation/Applied Digital Solutions was sued by its feasible at this time. However, if widely deployed at some
shareholders for making materially false and misleading future point, implantable GPS devices could conceivstatements regarding hospital acceptance gures. Ac- ably allow authorities to locate missing persons and/or
cording to Glancy & Binkow, the law rm that led the fugitives and those who ed from a crime scene. Critics contend, however, that the technology could lead to
class action suit:
political repression as governments could use implants
to track and persecute human rights activists, labor activists, civil dissidents, and political opponents; criminals
"...on May 9, 2002, defendants [the then
and domestic abusers could use them to stalk and harass
Applied Digital Corporation] claimed that
their victims; slaveholders could use them to prevent capnearly every major hospital in the West Palm
tives from escaping; and child abusers could use them to
Beach, Florida area would be equipped with
locate and abduct children.
VeriChip scanners, an indispensable component of the Companys VeriChip technology.
Another suggested application for a tracking implant, disHowever, one day later on May 10, 2002, the
cussed in 2008 by the legislature of Indonesia's Irian Jaya
truth was disclosed that no hospital had acwould be to monitor the activities of persons infected
cepted a scanner, an essential device for rewith HIV, aimed at reducing their chances of infecting
trieving the VeriChips information. Following
other people.[15][16] The microchipping section was not,
the May 10, 2002, disclosure, the price of Aphowever, included into the nal version of the provincial
plied Digital stock again fell sharply, dropping
HIV/AIDS Handling bylaw passed by the legislature in
nearly 30% in a single day.[9]
December 2008.[17] With current technology, this would
not be workable anyway, since there is no implantable device on the market with GPS tracking capability.

2.2

Building access and security

Since modern payment methods rely upon RFID/NFC,


it is thought that implantable microchips, if they were to
ever become popular in use, would form a part of the
cashless society.[18] Verichip implants have already been
used in nightclubs such as the Baja club for such a purpose, allowing patrons to purchase drinks with their implantable microchip.

The VeriChip Corporation has marketed the implant as a


way to restrict access to secure facilities such as power
plants. Microchip scanners would be installed at entrances so locks only work for persons whose chip numbers are entered into the system. Two employees of CityWatcher, an Ohio video surveillance company, had RFID
tags injected into their arms in 2007. The workers needed
the implants to access the companys secure video tape 3
room, as documented in USA Today.[10] The company
closed, but there is no word on what happened to the em3.1
ployees or their implants.
A major drawback for such systems is the relative ease
with which the 16-digit ID number contained in a chip
implant can be obtained and cloned using a hand-held
device, a problem that has been demonstrated publicly
by security researcher Jonathan Westhues[11] and documented in the May 2006 issue of Wired magazine,[12]
among other places.

Potential problems
Cancer

Anti-RFID advocates cite veterinary and toxicological


studies carried out from 1996 to 2006 that found lab mice
and rats injected with microchips sometimes developed
cancerous tumors around the microchips (subcutaneous
sarcomas) as evidence of a human implantation risk.[19]
However, the link between foreign-body tumorigenesis in
lab animals and implantation in humans has been publicly
refuted as erroneous and misleading.[20]

The Baja Beach Club, a nightclub in Rotterdam, the


Netherlands, once used VeriChip implants for iden3.2
tifying VIP guests.[13]

Other medical complications

According to the FDA, implantation of the VeriChip


The Epicenter in Stockholm, Sweden is using RFID poses potential medical downsides.[21] Electrical hazards,
implants for employees to operate security doors, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) incompatibility, adcopiers, and pay for lunch.[14]
verse tissue reaction, and migration of the implanted

3
transponder are just a few of the potential risks associated with the Verichip ID implant device, according to
an October 12, 2004 letter issued by the FDA.[22]
According to the FDAs Primer on Medical Device Interactions with Magnetic Resonance Imaging Systems,
electrical currents may be induced in conductive metal
implants that can cause potentially severe patient burns.
However, when the MythBusters TV show, in episode 18
of the 2005 season, Myth Evolution, tested a microchip
implant in an MRI machine, neither test subject showed
any signs of pain. Since MRI machines come in various strengths, it is possible that higher energy-emitting
MRI machines may be more problematic. The model and
make of the chip could aect possible outcomes as well.

Revelation 13:16-17, King James Version


Bible

5 Legislation
Following Wisconsin and North Dakota,[28] California issued Senate Bill 362 in 2007, which makes it illegal to
force a person to have a microchip implanted, and provide for an assessment of civil penalties against violators
of the bill.[28]

On April 5, 2010, the Georgia Senate passed Senate Bill


235 that prohibits forced microchip implants in humans
and that would make it a misdemeanor for anyone to require them, including employers.[29] The bill would al3.3 Security risks
low voluntary microchip implants, as long as they are
performed by a physician and regulated by the Georgia
Since nearly all implantable microchips are unencrypted, Composite Medical Board. The House did not take up
they are extremely vulnerable to being read by third-party the measure. California, North Dakota and Wisconsin
scanners. By scanning secretly, someone could steal the already ban mandatory microchip implant.
information on a chip and clone the signal, enabling that
person to impersonate a chipped individual. This could On February 10, 2010 Virginias House of Delegates also
their
create security problems for building or computer access passed a bill that forbids companies from forcing
[30]
employees
to
be
implanted
with
tracking
devices.
or potentially enable criminal misuse of a medical account held by an unrelated person. Also, the chip could Washington State House Bill 1142-2009-10 orders a
easily be removed from the person, or the appendage study using implanted radio frequency identication or
containing the device could be removed.[8] The Council other similar technology to electronically monitor sex ofon Ethical and Judicial Aairs (CEJA) of the American fenders and other felons.[31]
Medical Association published a report in 2007 alleging
that RFID implanted chips may compromise privacy because there is no assurance that the information contained 6 See also
in the chip can be properly protected.[23]
RFID

Societal and religious criticism

Microchip implant in humans have raised new ethical discussions by academic groups,[24] human rights organizations, government departments and religious groups.
RFID tagging has been criticised by believers of Abrahamic religions.

Ambient intelligence

7 References
[1] Is human chip implant wave of the future?". CNN. January 13, 1999. Retrieved May 12, 2010.
[2] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w2gKJeM6Ihw link
Fox News Interviews Mikey Sklar

4.1

Christianity

In Christianity, some believe the implantation of chips


may be the fulllment of the prophecy of the Mark of the
Beast, said to be a requirement for buying and selling,[25]
and a key element of the Book of Revelation.[26][27]
And he causeth all, both small and great,
rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark
in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And
that no man might buy or sell, save he that
had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the
number of his name.

[3] http://www.jonnygoldstein.com/2005/12/29/
mikey-sklar-gets-an-rfid-tag-implanted-in-his-hand/
Johnny Goldstein Interviews Mikey Sklar
[4] Clark, Liat (November 11, 2014). Hand-implanted NFC
chips open this mans bitcoin wallet. Retrieved February
15, 2015.
[5] Lewan, Todd (September 8, 2007). Chip Implants
Linked to Animal Tumours. The Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-06-08.
[6] Edwards, Jim (July 15, 2010). Down With the Chip:
PositiveID Axes Its Scary Medical Records Implant.
bNET. Retrieved 2010-07-17.

[7] VeriTeQ Acquisition Corporation Acquires Implantable,


FDA-Cleared VeriChip Technology and Health Link Personal Health Record from PositiveID Corporation. Business Wire. January 17, 2012. Retrieved 2012-07-14.
[8] Byles, Ileiren (2006). Health-care chips could get under
your skin. Retrieved on 2006-10-28.
[9] http://www.globenewswire.com/ca/news.html?d=28620
Glancy & Binkow LLP Filed the First Class Action
Lawsuit Against Applied Digital Solutions, Inc. Based
Upon Recent Events -- ADSXE
[10] Lewan, Todd. USA Today. July 2007. Microchips in
humans spark privacy debate..
[11] Westhues, Jonathan. Demo: Cloning a VeriChip.
Demo: Cloning a VeriChip.
[12] Newitz, Annalee (May 2006). The RFID Hacking Underground. Wired. Retrieved July 13, 2011.
[13] http://www.baja.nl/vipform.aspx
[14] Mearian, Lucas (February 6, 2015). Oce complex implants RFID chips in employees hands. Computerworld.
Retrieved February 15, 2015.
[15] Indonesias Papua plans to tag AIDS suerers, Mon Nov
24, 2008.
[16] Jason Tedjasukmana (Nov 26, 2008), Papua Proposal: A
Microchip to Track the HIV-Positive, Time
[17] Government Of Indonesian Province Rejects Plan To Implant Microchips In Some HIV-Positive People, 2008-1208
[18] Cashless Society
[19] Lewan, Todd (September 8, 2007), Chip Implants
Linked to Animal Tumours, The Washington Post, retrieved 2010-06-08
[20] http://www.rfidjournal.com/articles/view?3609
[21] http://www.spychips.com/press-releases/verichip-fda.
html FDA LETTER RAISES QUESTIONS ABOUT
VERICHIP SAFETY, DATA SECURITY: Implantable
RFID device poses potential risks to health
[22] http://www.spychips.com/devices/verichip-fda-report.
html CASPIAN Special Report, October 19, 2004: FDA
Letter Raises Questions about VeriChip Safety, Data
Security
[23] CEJA of the American Medical Association, CEJA Report 5-A-07, Radio Frequency ID Devices in Humans,
presented by Robert M. Sade, MD, Chair. 2007
[24] Ethical Assessment of Implantable Brain Chips, by Ellen
M. McGee and G. Q. Maguire, Jr., Boston University
[25] Revelation 14:9-11. Bible Gateway. Retrieved 201007-03.
[26] Albrecht, Katherine; McIntyre, Liz (2006-01-31). The
Spychips Threat: Why Christians Should Resist RFID and
Electronic Surveillance. Nelson Current. ISBN 1-59555021-6.

EXTERNAL LINKS

[27] Baard, Mark (2006-06-06). RFID: Sign of the (End)


Times?". Wired.com. Retrieved 2009-10-13.
[28] California Bans Forced RFID Tagging of Humans, Government Technology website, October 17, 2007
[29] http://votesmart.org/bill/10786/28834/
ban-on-required-human-microchip-implantation#
.U49ngS_O63U
[30] Virginia delegates pass bill banning chip implants as mark
of the beast, The Raw Story , By Daniel Tencer Wednesday, February 10th, 2010 retrieved April 23, 2010
[31] HB 1142-2009-10 to study requiring the use of implanted
RFID in certain felons.

8 Further reading
Haag, Stephen; Cummings, Maeve,; McCubbrey,
Donald (2004). Management Information Systems
for the Information Age (4th ed.). New York City,
New York: McGraw-Hill. ISBN 0-07-281947-2.
Albrecht, Katherine; McIntyre, Liz (2005). Spychips: How Major Corporations and Government
Plan to Track your Every Move with RFID (1st ed.).
Nashville, Tennessee: Nelson Current. ISBN 159555-020-8.
Graafstra, Amal (2004).
RFID Toys: 11 Cool
Projects for Home, Oce and Entertainment (4th
ed.). New York City, New York: (ExtremeTech)
Zi Davis Publishing Holdings Inc. ISBN 0-47177196-1.

9 External links
No VeriChip Inside - We the People Will Not Be
Chipped Movement- Say No to Human Chipping
AntiChips.com - Research, Activism, and Legislation Opposing the Chipping of Humans and Pets
Lewan, Todd. The Associated Press, September 8,
2007. Chip Implants Linked to Animal Tumors
Studies Linking Microchips and Cancer

10
10.1

Text and image sources, contributors, and licenses


Text

Microchip implant (human) Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microchip%20implant%20(human)?oldid=655853104 Contributors:


Paul Barlow, Bogdangiusca, David Latapie, Jake Nelson, Wetman, Secretlondon, Robbot, Paul Klenk, SchmuckyTheCat, Mitaphane, Discospinster, Vsmith, Evice, Spalding, Stesmo, 23skidoo, Wrs1864, Nsaa, Alansohn, Wtmitchell, BD2412, FreplySpang, Emes, Rjwilmsi,
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10.2

Images

File:RFID_hand_2.jpg Source: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c5/RFID_hand_2.jpg License: CC BY-SA 2.0 Contributors: http://flickr.com/photos/28129213@N00/7267161/in/set-181299/ Original artist: Amal Graafstra

10.3

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