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  1. #1

    Wallmart tracking device ?

    I think I saw a label that said it came with one of these, I notice two of the same product with different price.

    BIG BROTHER COMES TO WAL-MART





    By Mary Starrett

    June 11, 2003

    NewsWithViews.com

    Starting this week, the nation's largest discount retailer will quietly begin selling tracking-chipped products to clueless shoppers. The first volley in their war against our privacy is set to start at their Brockton, Massachusetts store.

    Wal-Mart will put Radio Frequency I.D. sensors on shelves stocked with RFID-tagged Gillette products, but they'd rather you didn't know about it, because, hey, you might not like it, and then you might make noise and then they'd have a big PR mess on their hands.

    You might even stop buying Gillette products or, say, refuse to shop at Wal-Mart.

    These chips, researched at M.I.T.'s Auto-ID Center are about the size of a grain of sand. Chipsters say the technology will only be used to help retailers keep track of inventory - like bar codes. But privacy-loving consumers question the very concept of a device that sends out radio waves to "readers" that not only identify the article, but where and with whom it's going.

    The Big Brother implications of this thing need little hyping to get your skin crawling.

    Wal-Mart's putting the pressure on its top 100 suppliers to make sure their inventory is all chipped by the end of next year.

    But why start this in Brockton, Mass?

    Could it be because the store's customers are typically lower income minorities who'd be less likely to be aware of the tracking devices, and even less likely to make a fuss about them?

    Their thinking? Let's foist it on folks who're too concerned about paying the electric bill to be aware of these types of issues.

    Retailers are SUPPOSED to alert their customers to the tracking chips and offer to "kill" the tags at the checkout counter.

    Don't count on it, because what you don't know won't hurt you, right? And to PROVE those RFID tags won't be "killed" at the cash register one of the ways they're planning on convincing you, the shopper that these tags are A-OK is by touting how "hassle-free" returns will be. Huh? If the tags are supposedly turned off at purchase, how can they be read after the item's brought back to the store? Just one of the myriad lies you'll be told about this technology.

    Are we to expect that in addition to being asked the "paper or plastic" question we'll get an option on whether the RFID tags are left on or turned off? Not only will consumers be witnessing the death throes of privacy, but it's going to cost them. Currently, the chips cost about 60 cents each. Add that to the cost of each and every item that uses this Orwellian technology. Gillette and Wal-Mart are only the pioneers here, the stated plan is to affix each item produced on the planet with RFID tags. Each pack of gum, each roll of film, each bottle of Merlot.

    So what's a freedom-loving shopper to do?

    Fortunately for us, there's a really smart lady finishing up a Ph.D. at Harvard. She started a group that's bellowing out the urgency of fighting this technology; her name is Katherine Albrecht and she's founder of CASPIAN (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion And Numbering). Albrecht's CASPIAN has proposed a piece of federal legislation called "RFID RIGHT TO KNOW ACT OF 2003". It's a law that would let consumers know which products had tracking chips attached to them. In short, the proposed bill would amend the Fair Packaging and Labeling Program by adding language that requires manufacturers to state (in a conspicuous location) that the package contains a radio frequency identification tag that can transmit unique identification information to a "reader" device both before and AFTER it's purchased(!).

    This is where you come in.

    The bill needs a sponsor.

    Maybe YOUR Congressional Representative would like to go on record as having helped stop this assault on our privacy. Forward this article to him/her and tell them the entire text of the bill can been seen at nocards.org.

    Will you make it a point to email, call or fax your representative today, before our Big Brother gets any bigger? Do it NOW before the lobbyists and big money special interests get to them and convince Congress these RFID chips are consumer-friendly!

    And while you're at it, why not tell the suits at Wal-Mart and Gillette (and Home Depot, Proctor and Gamble and Johnson & Johnson, too, by the way) that from here on out you wouldn't go near their stores or their products with a ten foot pole.

    It works. Remember back a few months when I told you how Italian clothing company Benetton had chipped their Sisely line of clothes and was all set to roll out the garments with RFID tracking devices? Well your outrage and feedback caused them to put the scheme on hold.

    Let's make sure the behemoth Wal-Mart is similarly put on notice. (By the way, IBM's planning to add RFID to it's products; so if Wal-Mart manages to sneak this past us, all bets are off and then every corporate giant will be able to inflict this chilling, tracking/monitoring horror on us.)

    If RFID gets off the ground as planned, that would make George Orwells' predictions off by just 20 years. It's up to us.

    2003 Mary Starrett - All Rights Reserved

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    Mary Starrett was on television for 21 years as a news anchor, morning talk show host and medical reporter. For the last 5 years she hosted a radio program. Mary is a frequent guest on radio talk shows. E-Mail [email protected]

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    "These chips, researched at M.I.T.'s Auto-ID Center are about the size of a grain of sand. Chipsters say the technology will only be used to help retailers keep track of inventory - like bar codes. But privacy-loving consumers question the very concept of a device that sends out radio waves to "readers" that not only identify the article, but where and with whom it's going."



  2. #2
    Moderator PlantPerson's Avatar
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    sigh.... can't people see that RFID tags can be a GOOD thing? After doing a little research into what they actually do and how they work, you may find that you like the idea.
    "If we shadows have offended, Think but this, and all is mended, That you have but slumber'd here. While these visions did appear." - William Shakespeare
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  3. #3
    That's like saying rape and murder is a good thing %|



  4. #4
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    http://www.stoprfid.com


    .but. one would be foolish to think that it is a technology that can, or will be stopped. just like many other forms of "spyware", it will be sold under the guise of being better for the consumer by giving manufacturers feedback about thier target markets.

    all of the bills and laws in the world can be signed trying to stop this, but in the end, big money, politcs, and corporations will win.

    if this seems like a negative point of view to some, I cannot , or will not apologize for the way I feel.

    my theory is that eventually there will be a counter movement against this tagging system that will render it useless

    AND YOU WILL FIND ME THERE
    Only those who have the patience to do simple things perfectly ever acquire the ability to do difficult things easily



  5. #5
    Ah, but whatever can be use for good can be use for evil as well, these ID tags can be switch and reprogram to get a profit when the product is return, it could also be use to track police men, government workers and possible assignations. They are already trying to develop a GPS RFID tag. The evil will be use for it's down fall. And for security issues, you just need to scan and recreate, but even if they are encrypted they will cost a hell a lot more.



  6. #6
    Moderator Dittohead's Avatar
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    There's good and bad to this subject.

    I don't want government or large corperations getting their hands on it. I think it'd be great if they used it for one thing like what wal-mart is doing, tracking inventory. That would eliminate inventory-ing (not sure what the word I'm looking for is), a higly loathed job.

    Just like the internet to the recording industry and the world: humanity will over come it.

    Just like piano rolls before the internet: humanity will overcome it.

    Don't get your shorts in a wad. Everyone thinks the era they're living in is the most "epic". That the stakes are the highest. Empires come and go (by many means), but they do not have the tools to maintain it. Thus they fall rapidly. Humanity has overcome almost every issue we've ever faced, this one is no different.
    Happiness is a loaded camera.



  7. #7
    Ok, but lets say if one is wishing to assassinate a leader, you hand them a pen or card with this RFID tag in it, then you use a scanner to find the shortest distant from the scanner on the gun to an ID tag. You now have a sight that be use through walls, because you will know that the shortest distant is in a straight line. Now lets say if you a drug smuggler or terrorist and want a warning device that lets you know when they coming, you sprinkle a little of this stuff on a ground and put a stinky substance to it, then you have RF readers a little inner, when the feds come sneaking up, the tags will stick on the bottom of there shoes, when the tag and scanner cross path it can be use to warn the enemy or set off a bomb.



  8. #8
    Member Carnivore's Avatar
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    wtf is wrong with america? I mean, really, only there do such insane concepts pop up. Thank god i'm half a globe away from those taggers, comsumers and providers. To hell with all of you, i'll be in the nearest secret underground cave hatching a masterplan to destroy you all!
    [size=2]Ceterum censeo Carthagien esse delendum.[/size]



  9. #9
    Well, they being sold to other countrys as well. Get a RF reader is the only suggestion I could give you.



  10. #10
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    my understanding of these chips is that their distance is limited to about 5cm. I.E. right next to the reader.

    i have two of these chips perminantly in my wallet, one is to get onto the bus, it stores my bus card balance.

    the other it to access my university buildings.

    both devices could be used to track my movements, the university one could act as proof of me being there if a robbery happens, but if i am nto the robber i don't care.

    and the bus one can be used by the company to work out passenger movement. (a compnay does not have time to invade personal privacy, they just use statistics)

    now neither of these would be able to be tracked any distance.

    i am not worried about this at all, only thing i care about is the environmental inpact of adding such a device to multiple products. i think that is an overlooked consequence.

    Alltaken
    Flippin Designer



  11. #11
    The cost of mass production that it has on the environment ?



  12. #12
    Donating Member rndrdbrian's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Al_Capone
    The cost of mass production that it has on the environment ?
    A teeny tiny weeny winy infinitely small amount more than the cost of mass produced consumer goods?

    --
    Brian



  13. #13
    Member mifune's Avatar
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    the problem is that you have to store and procces the data. i dont think its a bigger threat than having a sellphone or a credit card. (or windows xp installed)



  14. #14
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    Wow, paranoia is running rampant today.

    and Alltaken has about the only voice of common sense/sanity.
    (BTW, I think the range is about 5m)

    Maybe they are starting the tags in a low income area because of a high shoplifting rate? hmmm?

    Al_Capone:
    Ok, but lets say if one is wishing to assassinate a leader, you hand them a pen or card with this RFID tag in it, then you use a scanner to find the shortest distant from the scanner on the gun to an ID tag. You now have a sight that be use through walls, because you will know that the shortest distant is in a straight line. Now lets say if you a drug smuggler or terrorist and want a warning device that lets you know when they coming, you sprinkle a little of this stuff on a ground and put a stinky substance to it, then you have RF readers a little inner, when the feds come sneaking up, the tags will stick on the bottom of there shoes, when the tag and scanner cross path it can be use to warn the enemy or set off a bomb.
    The RFID tags don't do very well transmitting through walls. The range is very limited. If you are 5m away from a 'leader', I think you can find the person without an RF scanner. An RF detector is not a laser, especially through a wall. You wouldn't find the 'straight line', the RF would be reflected unless it was line of sight and then you could see the person.

    'Drug smugglers' and 'terrorists' use simpler solutions.
    1) Put a small camera like a wireless web camera to watch for 'feds sneaking around'
    2) They place an RF detector in a doorway of a lobby or a doorway in a room. (When police enter a building they usually check their radios before going up -- RF detected, webcam viewed, drugs destroyed) In a doorway, the RF detector detects transmissions from a microphone.

    Al_Capone (again):
    ... it could also be use to track police men, government workers and possible assignations. They are already trying to develop a GPS RFID tag.
    Not exactly. The limited range makes it a bit impractical. There are other devices currently in use for tracking police and military. They are usually attached to the vehicle. Forget the GPS RFID tag. The biggest implementation is GPS location in phones. Pretty soon every cell phone will have GPS added. That is where you get real tracking of individuals.

    The advantages for large stores are primarily inventory. A person can walk through the aisles with a small receiver and instantly update the inventory. Place detectors in the doorway and you detect when someone shoplifts an item.
    If something is misplaced in a warehouse, it can be found without having to open every single box.
    If a truck is making multiple deliveries, the dispatcher can instantly know what is remaining on the truck and if a mistake was made.
    Check out my favorite author\'s website at Regan Black



  15. #15
    Member mifune's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by blenderanim
    The biggest implementation is GPS location in phones. Pretty soon every cell phone will have GPS added. That is where you get real tracking of individuals.
    not needed. you can track any sellphone if you have acces to the data of the antennas of the telephone company. your telephone is constantely transmitting signals to recievers. if you have the data of three of them you can do some basic math and they know your position. within a pretty close range.



  16. #16
    that's y i dont shop wal-mart.... rather goto k-mart... and lets forget the fact I work at bigK anyhow LMAO it's irrelevant...

    but really.... I've gone to wal-mart and I dont know how people like it there!!!
    i goto electronics and there's some wanna-be goon standing in every aisle watching you!
    I'm paranoid in that place! I dont even goto the restroom cause i'm pretty damn sure they got a cam in the crapper!! :P

    ooooh and the big thing... everyone thinks they got the great deals.. BULL! I went the other day.... their pumpkins for halloween were one penny cheaper than ours! If people consider that a deal then I say y'all are (omitted vulgar phrase).

    Target, Kmart, Safeway are all I need.................



  17. #17
    Member Carnivore's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by mifune
    your telephone is constantely transmitting signals to recievers. if you have the data of three of them you can do some basic math and they know your position. within a pretty close range.
    Interesting actually, me and many others use this "feature" daily, but we don't consider that a breach of our privacy... I actually find it very comfortable that I can see the street which I am in constanly on my mobile's screen.
    Doesn't the accuracy depend on the number or proximity of antennas, though? I mean, it's pretty inaccurate in remote locations.
    [size=2]Ceterum censeo Carthagien esse delendum.[/size]



  18. #18
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    Originally Posted by mifune
    Originally Posted by blenderanim
    The biggest implementation is GPS location in phones. Pretty soon every cell phone will have GPS added. That is where you get real tracking of individuals.
    not needed. you can track any sellphone if you have acces to the data of the antennas of the telephone company. your telephone is constantely transmitting signals to recievers. if you have the data of three of them you can do some basic math and they know your position. within a pretty close range.
    Not true.
    You can only track the phone within an individual cell. That is an area that can be a few blocks to a few miles in diameter. Sometimes more than 2 cells overlap, most times they don't. For most military and law enforcement applications, that is not precise enough. The towers are not directional and can't give a bearing to a cell phone. When there are multiple cell towers in range of the phone the service hands off to different towers based on the traffic load. The best you get is "he is somewhere in this cell, oh, he just moved to this cell, so he is in this () slice, or moving -- not very precise.
    Check out my favorite author\'s website at Regan Black



  19. #19
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    Originally Posted by blenderanim
    You can only track the phone within an individual cell. That is an area that can be a few blocks to a few miles in diameter. Sometimes more than 2 cells overlap, most times they don't.
    in a city there maybe a cell phone antenna on every corner of every intersection. you can be triangulated to a few meters in the CBD of nearly any city in the world.

    in the country side of a well covered country you can be gotten to the ceel tower range.

    with a new phone (all equipt with GPS) you can be tracked anywhere, and even friends can ask where you are from their phone, and it will give your co-ordinates. the "find friend" function of the new ones.



    the rf chips becaus they contain no power device, can only be detected if there RF signal is induced by an electric field. this means the range of their use is only good if they have a reader close to them. i.e. i need to hold my wallet to the bus thing to pay, and at university i need to hold my wallet or leg to the device.

    the power needed for longer range detection is a lot more, or multiple recivers are needed (like in library doors and such.

    still only a few metres range, not much to worry about.

    Alltaken
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  20. #20
    Member theeth's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Alltaken
    the rf chips becaus they contain no power device, can only be detected if there RF signal is induced by an electric field. this means the range of their use is only good if they have a reader close to them. i.e. i need to hold my wallet to the bus thing to pay, and at university i need to hold my wallet or leg to the device.

    the power needed for longer range detection is a lot more, or multiple recivers are needed (like in library doors and such.

    still only a few metres range, not much to worry about.
    And this is exactly why long range detection on RFID is impossible/impractical. Unless, of course, you want to fry pretty much all the electronics in an area (and part of peoples brain if you're lucky). In which case, detecting or not the RFID chips might not be the greatest of your worries.

    Martin
    Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans.
    - John Lennon



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