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Officials secretly RFID'd at Internet Summit 216

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the thats-just-creapy dept.
ewoudenberg writes "A Washington Times article reports that researchers managed to gain entrance to the Internet and technology conference in Switzerland last week only to discover that the summit's badges contained undisclosed RFID chips. The badges were handed out to more than 50 prime ministers, presidents and other high-level officials from 174 countries, including the United States."
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Officials secretly RFID'd at Internet Summit

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  • Cool. (Score:5, Funny)

    by torpor (458) <jayvNO@SPAMsynth.net> on Sunday December 14, 2003 @11:42AM (#7716635) Homepage Journal
    Politicians should be made to wear RFID's from the day they enter office in service of the public, to the day they leave that office.

    "For the people, and of the people" can only be effective if the people keep a track on such people with power ...
  • by bruthasj (175228) <bruthasj@yaho[ ]om ['o.c' in gap]> on Sunday December 14, 2003 @11:43AM (#7716637) Homepage Journal
    With RFID.

    Note for the humor-impaired: this is a joke.
  • by brian728s (666853) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @11:44AM (#7716653)
    Lightbulbs are now being labeled a terrorist device, used to spy on people and documents at places including the pentagon, the whitehouse, and even the United Nations building. Hackers used the light bulbs to send out light, which when intercepted by their illegal hacker tools called "eyes", can identify diplomats, and read classified documents. Americans can rest assured that their safety is being protected by operation "hammerbulb". Democrats are concerned about a lack of hammers to complete the operation, but administration officials assure them that rocks can be used if the shortage proves true.
  • Privacy (Score:5, Funny)

    by penguinoid (724646) <spambait001@yahoo.com> on Sunday December 14, 2003 @11:44AM (#7716654) Homepage Journal
    They met to discuss privacy matters on the internet (among other things).
    I wonder what their policy will be?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 14, 2003 @11:48AM (#7716704)
    Badges? We don't need no stinkin badges!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 14, 2003 @11:50AM (#7716734)
    Well, one can hope that Ossama bin Laden got to this conference too. It might help the CIA to get him too ;o)
  • by SurgeonGeneral (212572) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @11:59AM (#7716821) Journal
    Well how about just some way I can find my keys and television remote control.. That alone would make this technology the best thing since sliced silicon.
  • Re:Summary (Score:5, Funny)

    by Crash Culligan (227354) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @12:47PM (#7717267) Journal
    To summarise the article, a group of reporters were pissed that they weren't invited to attend the conference.

    That's no surprise. If I recall correctly, the G7 summits are intended to be discussions on global economic policy, to which none of the affected people (pretty much everybody but government officials) are ever invited. (In fact, I don't hear of many economists going to those conferences either; if I'm wrong, please correct.)

    As for press not getting in, sure you may loathe muckraker reporting (many people do), but sometimes there's just too much muck to allow to pile up. Do you really want your government to be deciding elements of policy without any input from its constituency? That's becoming the norm, and guerilla reporting may soon be the only way the operation of said government can come to light.

    They disected a security card, and found (shock, horror) that it contained features designed to maintain security at said conference. Since this is the only dirt they managed to find, they spin it up into a sky-is-falling end-of-the-world privacy story.

    Yeah, I see where the article could sound like sour grapes. But then there's something to be said for the irony of the situation, and I'm glad that someone was in there to highlight it.

    1. Government officials attend privacy and security conference.
    2. Reporters crash privacy and security conference, demonstrating lack of security.
    3. Reporters analyze badges from privacy and not-security conference and find RFID tags, demonstrating lack of privacy.
    4. Article about lack-of-privacy and not-security conference reaches the public.
    5. ???
    6. Privacy!!

    I'm not perfectly sure, but I think that next-to-the-last step should be Citizens of the world slap their respective governments upside the head and scream "What were you goobers THINKING??"

    At least, that's my take on it...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 14, 2003 @12:50PM (#7717311)
    Well i'd rather tell them i had a bad case of Diarrhoea then tell them that I was doing the wife of (insert name of desired country) in it.

  • by Zed2K (313037) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @12:57PM (#7717382)
    That someone hit the bathroom at 12:30pm and then again at 3:30pm. They also exited the room for a smoke break after their bathroom break. Oh and don't forget the super secret buying of a Snickers bar at 3:35pm.
  • Re:Cool. (Score:3, Funny)

    by Handpaper (566373) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @01:16PM (#7717540)
    It's 01:30. Do you know where your Congressman is?

  • by Woy (606550) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @01:19PM (#7717558)
    Maybe slashdot should add RFID to the stories, so that when they come the 2nd time around we can detect them right away...
  • by 1u3hr (530656) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @01:46PM (#7717803)
    I'll bet it would be possible to use a spam-filter-esque system to compare the text of the articles....

    I bet it would be possible to check the spelling of the articles posted using a "spell checker". I recall using one in the late 70s on my student Unix system.

  • by Engush (732751) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @01:52PM (#7717843)
    "The badges were handed out to more than 50 prime ministers, presidents and other high-level officials from 174 countries, including the United States."

    so each official was from an average of 3.5 countries?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 14, 2003 @03:40PM (#7718767)
    Mod parent +2i because the real directions are taken.
  • Re:Cool. (Score:2, Funny)

    by indianajones428 (644219) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @06:35PM (#7720127)
    It's 01:30. Do you know where your Congressman is?


    Why, he's right there in my crosshairs...


    Seriously, wouldn't this be too much of a security risk, even if it's just in one building and not everywhere they go?
  • by Spectrum_Leap (623660) on Sunday December 14, 2003 @09:10PM (#7721042)
    "I don't give a stuff who they're screwing in private. I want to know who they're screwing in public!"
  • by KC7GR (473279) on Monday December 15, 2003 @02:08AM (#7722604) Homepage Journal
    AP SPOOFWIRE -- Two microwave ovens were seriously damaged today at the Internet and Technology Conference in Switzerland when numerous conference attendees, annoyed when they discovered that their badges contained RFID chips, tried to disable those same chips through "nuking" them in the ovens.

    Cafeteria staff were stunned by the spectacle produced when each oven was crammed full of badges, and the 'Start' button pressed. "I'd always heard stories about what would happen if you put anything with metal in it into a microwave" said head cook Rowena Splatt, "But I never thought I would ever see it in action! That horrible buzzing noise, the showers of sparks -- though I will admit that all those colors were kind of pretty -- but the smell! Oh, that was the worst part!! It reminded us all of last week's liver-and-onion special, with hints of burned cranberries and overcooked zucchini..."

    Security personnel monitoring the RFID receiver systems also reported strange occurrences. "It was like thousands of these tinny little Munchkin-like voices screamed 'Help Meeeeeee!' all at once" reported Lt. Take-Emin Andbookem, head of security for the event. "And you wouldn't believe the volume! I've still got six people in the hospital, getting checked for hearing damage."

    The event's organizers have reported that the badges will be reissued -- without RFID chips, this time -- and that the homogenized melted-together masses of the other badges will be made into holiday mobiles which will also feature unused AOL 9.0 CDs and old 30-pin memory SIMMs.

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