Ready to be micro-chipped voluntarily? A number of Swedish people already are.
Over 4,000 [and rising] have been implanted with a microchip that contains details about their identity, bypassing the need for cash, tickets and access cards. The tiny implant lets you enter buildings, get into gigs and even share stuff on social media. Involving a procedure costing about $280 and a chip the size of a rice grain, several companies in Sweden offer the service to their employees for free.
Indeed they might. The next gen use of these is to introduce extra security layers in the workplace. Rather than a simple scan-to-function process [which is what most of Sweden’s chips do] some chips and readers developed in the US are designed to be part of a multistage feedback network. For example: Your chip could give you access to your computer, but only if it had already unlocked the front door for you. However, it’s likely that added value to the person – as opposed to the corporation – will continue to push uptake through to a tipping point; health uses being the obvious driver. Such chips are well proven as used with cattle for such bodily monitoring and feedback. Now the FDA in the US has approved a continuous glucose monitoring implant for diabetics.
Another interesting option is the use of a chip to make guns safe by needing to have one to activate trigger mechanisms, Bond style. [Well, safe for small kids that might pick them up. If you leave them lying around, your view of ‘ethics’ might not be the same as everyone else’s]. But – and it’s a big, fat, liberty-based, paranoia-fuelled but – the obvious problem is the use for non-consensual monitoring. GPS might help parents keep their kids [or parents with dementia] safe but it elevates the seductions and problems of helicopter parenting – never mind how such tech might be used for governance and political purposes. That said, it’s here and the debate is on. Time to get up to speed.