Text of regulations:
Passports to get RFID chip implants
October 25, 2005, 12:12 PM PDT
All U.S. passports will be implanted with remotely-readable computer
chips starting in October 2006, the Bush administration has announced.
Sweeping new State Department regulations issued Tuesday say that
passports issued after that time will have tiny radio frequency ID
(RFID) chips that can transmit personal information including the name,
nationality, sex, date of birth, place of birth and digitized photograph
of the passport holder. Eventually, the government contemplates adding
additional digitized data such as "fingerprints or iris scans."
Over the last year, opposition to the idea of implanting RFID chips in
passports has grown amidst worries that identity thieves could snatch
personal information out of the air simply by aiming a high-powered
antenna at a person or a vehicle carrying a passport. Out of the 2,335
comments on the plan that were received by the State Department this
year, 98.5 percent were negative. The objections mostly focused on
security and privacy concerns.
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