STOCKHOLM (CBSNewYork) — Microchips implanted in human bodies could transform the way we tackle many everyday tasks.
Some workers in Sweden are already testing the technology, but is the convenience worth the risk?
As CBS2’s John Blackstone reported, employees in a Stockholm business complex gain access, not with key cards, but with the wave of a hand.
“This is something you can use just like a key badge,” Hannes Sjoblad explained.
At a recent tech conference, Sjoblad explained how a microchip implanted in his hand makes life easier. It replaces all the keys and cards that used to clutter his pockets.
“I use my chip many times day. For example, I use it to unlock my smart phone, to open the door to my office,”he said.
Sjoblad — Chief Disruption Officer at Epicenter — calls himself a biohacker.
“We biohackers, we thing the human body is a good start, but there is certainly room for improvement,” he said.
The first step in that improvement is getting a microchip about the size of a grain of rice slipped under the skin. Suddenly, the touch of a hand is enough to tell the office printer ‘this is an authorized user.’
“It felt very scary, but at the same time it felt very modern,” one woman said.
The microchips are radio frequency identification tags. The same technology widely used in things like key cards. The chips have been implanted in animals for years to help identify lost pets. Now, the technology is moving to humans.
Each tough leaves a digital footprint, which can compromise privacy.
“We’re talking about a nonstop potential connection to my body, right, and I can’t turn it off. I can’t put it away. It’s in me. That’s a big problem,” Ian Shore, executive editor, CNET said.
Even a dedicated biohacker has concerns.
“It’s very easy to hack a chip implant, so my advice is don’t put your life secrets on a chip implant,” Sjoblad said.
Biohackers also predict the next generation of chips will save lives by monitoring health and fitness. For now, being chipped means never having to say you’re sorry you forgot your key card.