Microchip Implants News StoriesExcerpts of Key Microchip Implants News Stories in Major Media
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When the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved implanting microchips in humans, the manufacturer said it would save lives, letting doctors scan the tiny transponders to access patients' medical records almost instantly. The FDA found "reasonable assurance" the device was safe, and a sub-agency even called it one of 2005's top "innovative technologies." But neither the company nor the regulators publicly mentioned this: A series of veterinary and toxicology studies, dating to the mid-1990s, stated that chip implants had "induced" malignant tumors in some lab mice and rats. "The transponders were the cause of the tumors," said Keith Johnson, a retired toxicologic pathologist, explaining ... the findings of a 1996 study he led at the Dow Chemical Co. Leading cancer specialists reviewed the research for The Associated Press and ... 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. To date, about 2,000 of the so-called radio frequency identification, or RFID, devices have been implanted in humans worldwide. Did the agency know of the tumor findings before approving the chip implants? The FDA declined repeated AP requests to specify what studies it reviewed. 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. Two weeks after the device's approval took effect on Jan. 10, 2005, Thompson left his Cabinet post, and within five months was a board member of VeriChip Corp. and Applied Digital Solutions. He was compensated in cash and stock options.
Note: For more reliable information about the use and dangers of microchips, click here.
Some Amish farmers say a state requirement that they tag cattle with electronic chips is a violation of their religious beliefs. Last year, the state Department of Agriculture announced that Michigan cattle leaving farms must be tagged in the ear with electronic identification as part of an effort to combat bovine tuberculosis. That has drawn some resistance from the Amish, who typically shun technology. In April, Glen Mast and other Amish farmers appeared before the state Senate Appropriations Committee, urging it to block the program. "We're never happier than when we're just left alone," said Mast, whose farm in Isabella County operates without electricity. "That's all we're asking." State officials say the ability to trace food sources is increasingly important in the global economy. State officials said cattle are to be tagged if they are leaving the farm to be sold or change ownership. Kevin Kirk, who coordinates the program for the state agriculture department, said Amish farmers produced a "very, very small" percentage of the nearly 397 million pounds of beef sold by Michigan farmers last year. "Our No. 1 goal is animal health, human health and food safety," Kirk said. "I know it's hard sometimes to trust the government, but that's what we're asking is trust us." So far, the state has not forced the Amish to use the electronic tags but said they can wait until the animals arrive at an auction before having them applied, the newspaper said. Animal identification has traditionally involved a plastic or metal tag, or tattoo. Electronic ID uses a radio frequency device with a number unique to each animal, and speeds up the ability to locate or trace animals.
Note: To read an article that explains in more depth how the attitude of the Amish to the use of electronic chips on their cattle is that it is the "mark of the beast" in Bible prophecy, click here.
Imagine a day when the U.S. government implants microchips inside the brains of U.S. soldiers. Well you don't have to think too far into the future. The defense department is studying the idea now. The chip would be the size of a grain of rice. How far is too far when it comes to privacy? The department of defense recently awarded $1.6 million to Clemson University to develop an implantable biochip. It would go into the brain using a new gel that prevents the human body from rejecting it. The overall idea is to improve the quality and speed of care for fallen soldiers. "It's just crazy. To me, it's like a bad sci-fi movie," says Yelena Slattery [from] the website www.WeThePeopleWillNotBeChipped.com. Slattery says, "Soldiers can't choose not to get certain things done because they become government property once they sign up. When does it end? When does it become an infringement on a person's privacy?" Once the chip is in, she says, could those soldiers be put on surveillance, even when they're off-duty? A spokesman for veterans of foreign wars also urged caution. Joe Davis said, "If you have a chip that's holding a gigabyte, or 10 gigs, like an iPod, what kind of information is going to be on there? How could this be used against you if you were taken captive?"
Note: For a treasure trove of recent and reliable information on the increasing penetration of microchips into our lives, click here.
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 ... was merely a way of restricting access to ... sensitive data and images ... the company said. 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 ... notion of tagging people was Orwellian. 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. "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. Within days of the company's announcement, civil libertarians and Christian conservatives joined to excoriate the microchip's implantation in people.
Note: For educated speculation on how certain powerful people might like to have everyone implanted with microchips for security and control purposes, click here.
Let's say your teenager is a habitual truant and there is nothing you can do about it. A Washington area politician thinks he might have the solution: Fit the child with a Global Positioning System chip, then have police track him down. "It allows them to get caught easier," said Maryland Delegate Doyle Niemann (D-Prince George's), who recently co-sponsored legislation in the House that would use electronic surveillance as part of a broader truancy reduction plan. "It's going to be done unobtrusively. The chips are tiny and can be put into a hospital ID band or a necklace." Niemann's legislation mirrors a bill sponsored by state Sen. Gwendolyn Britt (D-Prince George's). Both would provide truants and their parents with better access to social services, such as mental health evaluations and help with schoolwork. Electronic monitoring would be a last resort. Still, the prospect of tagging children and using them in some "catch and release" hunt by police casts a pall over everything that's good about the plan. Odd how billions and billions of dollars keep going to a war that almost nobody wants, but there's never enough to fund the educational programs that nearly everybody says are needed. Aimed solely at students in Prince George's — the only predominantly black county in the Washington area — the truancy effort is called a "pilot program," a first-of-its-kind experiment. It would cost $400,000 to keep track of about 660 students a year.
Note: For more reliable information on the push to microchip the entire population, click here.
They say money talks, and a new report suggests Canadian currency is indeed chatting, at least electronically, on behalf of shadowy spies. Coins containing tiny transmitters have mysteriously turned up in the pockets of at least three American contractors who visited Canada, says a branch of the U.S. Defence Department. Security experts believe the devices could be used to track the movements of defence industry personnel dealing in military technology. According to a report from the U.S. Defence Security Service, "On at least three separate occasions between October 2005 and January 2006, cleared defense contractors' employees travelling through Canada have discovered radio frequency transmitters embedded in Canadian coins placed on their persons." A service spokeswoman said details of the incidents were classified. The type of transmitter in play and its ultimate purpose remain a mystery. However, tiny tracking tags, known as RFIDs, are commonly placed in everything from clothing to key chains to help retailers track inventory. Each tag contains a miniature antenna that beams a unique identification code to an electronic reader. The information can then be transferred by the reader into a computerized database.
The US passport is about to go electronic, with a tiny microchip embedded in its cover. The chip is the latest outpost in the battle to outwit tamperers. But it's also one that worries privacy advocates. The RFID (radio frequency identification) chip in each passport will contain the same personal data as now appear on the inside pages - name, date of birth, place of birth, issuing office - and a digitized version of the photo. But the 64K chip will be read remotely. And there's the rub. The scenario, privacy advocates say, could be as simple as you standing in line with your passport as someone walks by innocuously carrying a briefcase. Inside that case, a microchip reader could be skimming data from your passport to be used for identity theft. Or maybe authorities or terrorists want to see who's gathered in a crowd and surreptitiously survey your ID and track you. Why not choose a contact chip, where there would be no possibility of skimming, asks Barry Steinhardt, director of the ACLU's Technology and Liberty Project. "There was another way to go, which was to put an electronic strip in the passport that would require contact." The State Department says it's just following international standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), under the umbrella of the United Nations. The ICAO specified the RFID ... at the behest of the United States. All countries that are part of the US visa-waiver program must use the new passports by Oct. 26, 2005. Mr. Steinhardt ... says the US pushed through the standards against the reservations of the Europeans. "Bush says at the G8 meeting, 'We have to adhere to the global standard,' as though we had nothing to do with it," he says in exasperation.
When Kevin Warwick enters his office building on the campus of Reading University, strange things happen. As Warwick heads down the main hall, lights turn on. When he turns to the right, an office door unbolts and opens. Each step is clocked and recorded. The building knows who he is, where he is, and what he expects to happen. The building [even] says, “Hello Professor Warwick.” The structure knows Warwick because of the electrical fuse-sized “smart card” implanted in his left arm. In Britain, he’s been dubbed “The Cyborg Man,” the first person known to have a microchip implanted in his body for communication with outside machines. Warwick predicts chip implants will one day replace time cards, criminal tracking devices, even credit cards. Capable of carrying huge amounts of data, they may, he says, one day be used to identify individuals by Social Security numbers, blood type, even their banking information. No one knows yet how the body will respond to this type of invasion. Warwick is not blind to the ethical questions of this technology. Implants ostensibly designed to clock workers in and out might be misused to monitor where people are at all times and who they are meeting. Governments could move to use implants instead of I.D. cards and passports, but what would stop them from using this new science to invade privacy? “I feel mentally different. When I am in the building I feel much more closely connected with the computer.
Queuing to get into one nightclub in Spain could soon be a thing of the past for regular customers thanks to a tiny computer chip implanted under their skin. The technology, known as a VeriChip, also means nightclubbers can leave their cash and cards at home and buy drinks using a scanner. The bill can then be paid later. Clubbers who want to join the scheme at Baja Beach Club in Barcelona pay 125 euros (about US $150) for the VeriChip -- about the size of a grain of rice -- to be implanted in their body. Then when they pass through a scanner the chip is activated and it emits a signal containing the individual's number, which is then transmitted to a secure data storage site. The club's director, Conrad Chase, said he began using the VeriChip, made by Applied Digital Solutions, in March 2004 because he needed something similar to a VIP card and wanted to provide his customers with better service. He said 10 of the club's regular customers, including himself, have been implanted with the chip, and predicted more would follow. "I know many people who want to be implanted," said Chase. "Almost everybody now has a piercing, tattoos or silicone. Why not get the chip and be original?" Chase said VeriChip could also boost security by speeding up checks at airports, for example. He denied the scheme had any drawbacks. The VeriChip is an in-house debit card and contains no personal information.
Note: Why is the media so upbeat about this? The article raises very few questions, yet seems to promote microchip implants in humans as the wave of the future for commerce.
A U.S. company launched Thursday in Mexico the sale of microchips that can be implanted under a person's skin and used to confirm everything from health history to identity. The microchips ... went on sale last year in the United States. The microchip, the size of a grain of rice, is implanted in the arm or hip and can contain information on everything from a person's blood type to their name. In a two-hour presentation, Palm Beach, Florida-based Applied Digital Solutions Inc. introduced reporters to the VeriChip and used a syringe-like device and local anesthetic to implant a sample in the right arm of employee Carlos Altamirano. “It doesn't hurt at all,” he said. “The whole process is just painless.” Antonio Aceves, the director of the Mexican company charged with distributing the chip here, said that in the first year of sales, the company hoped to implant chips in 10,000 people and ensure that at least 70 percent of all hospitals had the technology to read the devices. One chip costs $150 and has a $50 annual fee. Users can update and manage their chips' information by calling a 24-hour customer service line. The VeriChip can track subjects who are within 5 miles, but officials want to develop a new chip that can use satellite technology to track people who are farther away and may have been kidnapped. While the idea of using the chip to track people has raised privacy concerns in the United States, the idea has been popular with Mexicans. The company hopes to have the new anti-kidnapping chip developed by 2003.
With 32 wires sprouting from a cap on his head, University of Washington research assistant C.J. Bell stared at a computer screen and thought: "Red." Across the room, a 2-foot-tall robot called Morpheus shuffled up to a table holding a green block and a red block. Tilting his head, the machine scanned the choices with camera "eyes." Morpheus paused, then picked up the red block. Morpheus has a 94 percent success rate at reading simple mental commands. But he's only a first step toward developing a practical household robot controlled solely by brain waves, said Rajesh Rao, leader of the UW robot team and associate professor of computer science and engineering. Other researchers have wired humans to machines that allow them to move a cursor on a computer screen or operate a robotic arm with their thoughts. But those connections require electrodes inside the person's skull. With the system Rao and his colleagues have developed, the operator only suffers a bad hair day. To prepare for the demonstration, Bell pulled on the tight-fitting cap while fellow graduate student Pradeep Shenoy filled a 4-inch syringe with conductive gel. Shenoy injected the gel into the openings in the cap, and fitted an electrode to each. "The electrodes don't actually touch the skull," he explained. "They float in the goo, and the goo touches the skull. "Robotics is already an $11 billion-a-year industry. Bill Gates likens it to the computer business in 1970, when he and Paul Allen founded Microsoft.
Scientists have turned living rats into remote-controlled, pleasure-driven robots which can be guided up ladders, through ruins and into minefields at the click of a laptop key. The project ... is funded by the US military's research arm. Animals have often been used by humans in combat and in search and rescue, but not under direct computer-to-brain electronic control. The advent of surgically altered roborats marks the crossing of a new boundary in the mechanisation, and potential militarisation, of nature. In 10 sessions the rats learned that if they ran forward and turned left or right on cue, they would be "rewarded" with a buzz of electrically delivered pleasure. Once trained they would move instantaneously and accurately as directed, for up to an hour at a time. The rats could be steered up ladders, along narrow ledges and down ramps, up trees, and into collapsed piles of concrete rubble. Roborats fitted with cameras or other sensors could be used as search and rescue aids. In theory, be put to some unpleasant uses, such as assassination. [For] surveillance ... you could apply this to birds ... if you could fit birds with sensors and cameras. Michael Reiss, professor of science education at London's Institute of Education and a leading bioethics thinker ... said he was uneasy about humankind "subverting the autonomy" of animals. "There is a part of me that is not entirely happy with the idea of our subverting a sentient animal's own aspirations and wish to lead a life of its own."
Note: Remember that secret military projects are almost always at least a decade in advance of anything you read in the media. For lots more on this little-known subject, click here.
US scientists say a silicon chip could be used to replace the hippocampus, where the storage of memories is co-ordinated. They are due to start testing the device on rats' brains shortly. If that goes well, the Californian researchers will test the artificial hippocampus in live rats within six months and then monkeys trained to carry out memory tasks before progressing to human trials once the chip has been proved to be safe. The hippocampus is an area at the base of the brain in humans, close to the junction with the spinal cord. It is believed it "encodes" experiences so they can be stored as long-term memories in another part of the brain. the researchers were able to devise a mathematical model of a whole hippocampus. The model was then programmed on to a chip. They suggest the chip would sit on a patient's skull, rather than inside the brain. Bernard Williams, a philosopher at Oxford University, UK, who is an expert in personal identity, said people might find the technology hard to accept at first.
Note: Consider that top secret military experiments in almost all fields are generally at least a decade ahead of anything reported in the media. What do you think they might have developed by now? Could they have developed a way to erase and even replace memories? For more, click here.
Abandoned pets are a growing part of the military culture. Dogs and cats are dropped off in remote corners of the post at a rate of more than 20 a week. But the US Armed Forces are fighting back. Adopting a Big Brother approach, the military is implanting microchips in cats and dogs that live on government land – as much for animal control as for owner control. Says Fort Polk, La., Garrison Command Sgt. Maj. Ricky L. Jones of the soldier who abandons a pet, "with the chip you can't hide." Fort Polk has used the chip to track down soldiers who have abandoned their pets and forced them to pay an adoption fee. "It's a way to control our stray animal population and protect our working force, too," says Capt. Steven Baty, a veterinarian at Fort Carson, Colo., where microchipping has been mandatory since 1998. The tiny chips, the size of a grain of rice, are injected under the skin on an animal's neck and contain a bar code that can be scanned and read by humane societies and veterinary clinics nationwide. The procedure costs about $15, takes two to three seconds, and is no more painful than a typical vaccination. Microchip enforcement varies by base. At Fort Polk, La., animal controllers are part of a weekly housing patrol, joining inspectors who check to make sure lawns are cut and that soldiers aren't violating housing regulations. The animal controller carries a portable scanner and runs the wand over dogs and cats, looking for numbers to light up the small screen. If the pets don't have a microchip, soldiers are warned, and if they don't comply, their animals are taken away.
Note: The Monitor removed this article from their website. To see a copy of it on the Internet archive, click here.
Jerome Dobson is not joking. The University of Kansas research professor, a respected leader in the field of geographic information technologies [speculates about] "geoslavery" -- a form of technological human control that could make "George Orwell's `Big Brother' nightmare ... look amateurish." He's talking about overlords electronically punishing errant workers. He's talking about the possibility of people hooked to, tracked by, and potentially shocked or burned using inexpensive electronic bracelets, manacles or implants. Dobson worked for 26 years at Tennessee's Oak Ridge National Laboratory creating, for the government, the maps used in global tracking. He is the president of the American Geographical Society. And he is not alone in his thoughts. [In] the journal published by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, a paper titled "Geoslavery" is co-written by Dobson and Peter F. Fisher, British editor of the International Journal of Geographical Information Science. "Human tracking systems, currently sold commercially without restrictions, already empower those who would be masters. Safeguards have not yet evolved to protect those destined to be slaves," they wrote. With a laptop computer, employers can keep track of their drivers' every move. Implanted chips ... keep track of livestock or pets. Whereify Wireless Inc. sells its GPS Kids Locator for $400. The device, which also looks like a watch, can be locked to a child's wrist. Dobson said that ... none of the companies was thinking of anything nefarious. [Yet he] worries that where there is an evil will, there is an evil way. He hopes [to ] create debate and perhaps legislation or safeguards around the technology that will keep it from being misused.
A sensor implanted in a paralysed man's brain has enabled him to control objects by using his thoughts alone. The experimental set-up allowed the man, who has no limb movement at all, to open e-mail ... and pinch a prosthetic hand's fingers. The US team behind the sensor hopes its technology can one day be incorporated into the body to restore the movement of paralysed limbs themselves. A team of scientists inserted the device, called a neuromotor prosthesis (NMP), into an area of the brain known as the motor cortex, which is responsible for voluntary movement. The NMP comprises an internal sensor that detects brain cell activity, and external processors that convert the activity into signals that can be recognised by a computer. Using the device, Mr Nagle was able to move a computer cursor to open an e-mail, play simple computer games, open and close a prosthetic hand, and use a robot limb to grasp and move objects. Mr Nagle said the sensor had restored some of his independence by allowing him to carry out a number of tasks - such as turning the lights on - that a nurse would normally do for him. He told the BBC: "I can't put it into words. It's just wild."
Farmers and ranchers won't be forced to register their cows, pigs and chickens in a nationwide database aimed at helping track the outbreak of disease, the Bush administration said Wednesday. Hoping to dampen widespread opposition to the animal tracking program, the Agriculture Department has decided it should remain voluntary. First promised in response to the discovery of mad cow disease in this country, the tracking system would pinpoint an animal's movements within 48 hours after a disease was discovered. Investigators never found all 80 of the cattle that came to the U.S. from Canada with the infected dairy cow that became the country's first case of mad cow disease in 2003. Many cattle ranchers are wary of the program because they want records kept confidential and don't want to pay for the system. The industry estimates it could cost more than $100 million annually.
If you have a passport, now is the time to renew it -- even if it's not set to expire anytime soon. In many countries, including the United States, passports will soon be equipped with RFID chips. And you don't want one of these chips in your passport. RFID stands for "radio-frequency identification." Passports with RFID chips store an electronic copy of the passport information: your name, a digitized picture, etc. And in the future, the chip might store fingerprints or digital visas from various countries. By itself, this is no problem. But RFID chips don't have to be plugged in to a reader to operate. Like the chips used for automatic toll collection on roads or automatic fare collection on subways, these chips operate via proximity. The risk to you is the possibility of surreptitious access: Your passport information might be read without your knowledge or consent by a government trying to track your movements, a criminal trying to steal your identity or someone just curious about your citizenship. Security mechanisms are also vulnerable, and several security researchers have already discovered flaws. One found that he could identify individual chips via unique characteristics of the radio transmissions. Another successfully cloned a chip. The Colorado passport office is already issuing RFID passports, and the State Department expects all U.S. passport offices to be doing so by the end of the year. Many other countries are in the process of changing over. So get a passport before it's too late.
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Kiss your keyboard goodbye: soon we'll jack our brains directly into the Net - and that's just the beginning. Two years ago, a quadriplegic man started playing video games using his brain as a controller. It spells the beginning of a radical change in how we interact with computers. Someday, keyboards and computer mice will be remembered only as medieval-style torture devices for the wrists. All work - emails, spreadsheets, and Google searches - will be performed by mind control. [Consider] the sensational research that's been done on the brain of one Matthew Nagle. Nagle, a 26-year-old quadriplegic, was hooked up to a computer via an implant smaller than an aspirin that sits on top of his brain and reads electrical patterns. He learned how to move a cursor around a screen, play simple games, control a robotic arm, and even...turn his brain into a TV remote control [all] in less time than the average PC owner spends installing Microsoft Windows. Neurodevices - medical devices that compensate for damage to the brain, nerves, and spinal column - are a $3.4 billion business that grew 21 percent last year. There are currently some 300 companies working in the field. This kind of technology can enable a hooked-up human to write at 15 words a minute. Remember, though, that silicon-based technology typically doubles in capacity every two years. Last year, Sony took out a patent on a game system that beams data directly into the mind without implants. It uses a pulsed ultrasonic signal that induces sensory experiences such as smells, sounds and images.
Feel like you're being followed? Maybe it's a tracking tag on your jeans or one implanted in a credit card. The tags are called radio frequency identification or RFIDs, and every day they are becoming more and more a part of our lifestyle. These Orwellian microchips, as minute as a grain of sand, identify and track products and even lost children at theme parks. They're being implanted in humans to alert hospitals about medical conditions. The tags can be so tiny, you may never know they are there. Retailers claim RFIDs are essential: alerting them when they're low on lipstick, air filters, sodas and other inventory. Embedded tags aren't so obvious. Hitachi Europe recently developed the world's tiniest RFID integrated circuit, small enough to be placed in a piece of paper. Some RFID chips are made to be imbedded in livestock, in pets and most recently in humans for a variety of reasons. RFID prices have dropped, and tagging has become practical for businesses. In-Stat, a high-tech research firm, reports more than 1 billion RFID chips were made last year and predicts that by 2010 the number will increase to 33 billion. Slightly larger than a grain of rice, RFID chips from VeriChip of Florida are manufactured for implanting in humans. The Food and Drug Administration approved human implants two years ago.
Note: For lots more on microchip implants, see http://www.WantToKnow.info/microchipimplants
Important Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.