Last Friday, we took our lively little terrier dog to the veterinary surgeon (vets). He had his routine vaccination. The vet also checked that his implanted microchip was working OK.
In the UK by law, all pet dogs have to have microchips implanted (normally near the neck). The microchip is about the size of a grain of rice. It consists of a tiny computer chip housed in a type of glass made to be compatible with living tissue. The microchip is implanted between the dog’s shoulder blades under the skin with a needle and special syringe. The process is similar to getting an injection with little or no to no pain. Once in place, the microchip can be detected immediately with a handheld device that uses radio waves to read the chip. This device scans the microchip, and then displays a unique alphanumeric code. Once the microchip is placed, the dog must be registered with the microchip company, usually for a one-time fee. Then, the dog can be traced back to the owner if found.
Microchip and detector
This made me think to the future and all the surveillance and communication technology we have and use in the 21st Century.
Today, we use an increasing amount of Radio-frequency identification (RFID) wireless devices to monitor movements/location of people or items. Shops/stores use RFID for stock control or used to asset tag for inventories.
Indeed many of our smart phones, PC tablets can be tracked through built-in RFID devices. Cars and vehicles have RFID.
This technology is invaluable in locating/tracking lost or stolen pets & valuable items.
Ever increasing sophisticated implanted microchips would also provide a range medical benefits for monitoring health and even adjusting critical bodily functions to keep us healthy.
I wonder if, or indeed when humans maybe similarly ‘microchipped’ and have RFID implanted to monitor us . We would have a truly ‘Big Brother’ Orwellian 1984 nightmare, where the locations and status of all citizens are known or can be found by the government, regimes etc.
At birth or soon after, would all children have micro-chip implants by law and registered along side the Birth Certificate process!?
Possibly the microchip(s) would only be activated for specific, appropriate and lawful needs?
Possibly known criminals,terrorists etc., will be implanted with microchips active for their lifetimes or for a fixed period. This would make policing immeasurably more effective but remove fundamental human rights.