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article imageGermany to introduce RFID chip cards in 2010

By Andrew Moran     Dec 20, 2009 in World
The Interior Ministry of Germany will introduce radio-frequency (RFID) chip identification cards on November 1, 2010 that will contain a lot of personal information, fingerprint and a pin number.
“It’s smaller than the old one, but can do a lot more,” said German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere in a statement. As of November 1, 2010, German citizens will be introduced to new identification cards that contain RFID chips, which will digitally store personal information, according to The Local. Personal information, two fingerprint scans and a six digit PIN number will be stored in the identification cards.
However, some officials are cautious of the decision by the German government because there is no reason to include the RFID chip, which can be detected two meters away without the person’s knowledge, in an identification card since they are already in passports.
Head of the privacy and data security group at Technische Universitat Dresden, Dr. Andreas Pfitzmann, said that in the worst case scenario the cards could be used in a terrorist attack, “An extreme example would be that assuming German passports react differently to the radio frequency than American passports, I could use this frequency to set off a bomb where I know there are only Americans or Germans.” He was also against the RFID chips in passports during the late 1990s and expressed his concerns in front of Parliament.
Every old identification card can be used until they expire and citizens can apply for the cards early if they choose to do so.
There has been international concern over RFID chips because of personal location privacy. It has been brought up with the United States Department of Defense’s use of RFID tags for supply chain management
Digital Journal reported in July that the government of India will give 1.2 billion people new biometric identification cards..
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