RFID chips in the libraries

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posted on May, 5 2014 @ 12:27 AM
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I did a search for this topic, and didn't find anything more recent that four years, so I am starting a new thread on the topic.

I know this isn't new to a lot of places, but I watched a news report just tonight, that discussed the "new" technology installed at a local library. The information was presented in a very positive manner, with the discussion being all about how people could avoid long lines, check out as many book s as they wanted, and that sort of patter. They also discussed having to redo the door security, to work with the new system. So, the speed and convenience of checkout, and the better way to reduce theft, were mentioned, but not one hint was made towards any privacy issues. No one discussed whether or not they could track people via the books they check out, or how they could put together a profile much more easily, through this system. Poor "Jerry" (Conspiracy Theory) wouldn't even have to buy his book these days to be tracked; he could check one out, and they could follow him with it!

I have, for years now, gone to great effort to open and search every single DVD case for the little "theft prevention" strips. Some, I noticed, were hidden, and some were flat, and more difficult to remove. These days, the stuff is even smaller, and it's possible that they could tie in specific coding in such a device to a person's debit or credit card, to know not only what we bought, but to be able to track us through anything. Books, movies, CDs, games, clothing, accessories, jewelry. The way cash is treated as "archaic" by many ads is interesting, too. They want people to think that almost no one uses it anymore, or should. Such a system wouldn't even require a lot of manpower, either, with computers being what they are. They could easily set up parameters to alert whoever was monitoring, in case of certain combinations, or whatever. I know it's believed that they have done something like that with phone monitoring for decades now.

So, I know this isn't new, but it's spreading. I would like to hear what you all think about the issue as a whole, and if you see any way we can deal with it, in a practical sense. Also, if anyone has some interesting story to tell that is related to the various forms of tracking, I'd be interested in those as well. With all that is being done now, someone has to have seen some effect.




posted on May, 5 2014 @ 12:48 AM
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I watch everything that I have ever laughed at in my life...the technology to pull off the mark of the beast, the geopolitical climate to usher in the end of time, AI on the order of Terminator...I watch in terror as all of it slowly comes true before my eyes.



posted on May, 5 2014 @ 12:51 AM
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EPC is all the rage right now. Coming soon to a pair of underwear (very) near you:

Electronic Product Code




posted on May, 5 2014 @ 12:58 AM
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originally posted by: AnIntellectualRedneck
I watch everything that I have ever laughed at in my life...the technology to pull off the mark of the beast, the geopolitical climate to usher in the end of time, AI on the order of Terminator...I watch in terror as all of it slowly comes true before my eyes.


I hear you! Every day, things many said could never take place become real, and things many couldn't imagine, or refused to, are real as well. I don't fear, though, because I know who is in control.



posted on May, 5 2014 @ 01:00 AM
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originally posted by: NthOther
EPC is all the rage right now. Coming soon to a pair of underwear (very) near you:

Electronic Product Code






Egads! Everywhere, in virtually everything. Well, if they want a look into my private life, at least I can make it interesting.


It's only a matter of time before they start tagging people like cattle.



posted on May, 5 2014 @ 01:09 AM
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originally posted by: LadyGreenEyes

Egads! Everywhere, in virtually everything. Well, if they want a look into my private life, at least I can make it interesting.

Indeed. Like checking out the Anarchist Cookbook, the Kama Sutra, and Dr. Spock's Baby and Child Care all at the same time.



posted on May, 5 2014 @ 01:24 AM
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originally posted by: NthOther

originally posted by: LadyGreenEyes

Egads! Everywhere, in virtually everything. Well, if they want a look into my private life, at least I can make it interesting.

Indeed. Like checking out the Anarchist Cookbook, the Kama Sutra, and Dr. Spock's Baby and Child Care all at the same time.


*twitch, twitch*

Funny, though. I am more likely to do what my brother and I did some years back, when my calls to him were interrupted almost regularly when we started discussing certain "odd" subjects. Nothing political, but things like Bigfoot and UFOs, and the call would drop, and sometimes, you could sense another person listening. It was bad enough that he started rattling off lists of "flag words" at the start of the calls, then I would announce that I didn't care if they listened, as long as they stopped interrupting the calls. Strangely, we had FAR less issues after that! If someone was listening, they certainly got a wide range of topics to keep them from being bored. Well, unless they are like my other sibling, who thinks grocery shopping is exciting and who has about as much curiosity as a rock!



posted on May, 5 2014 @ 02:25 AM
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a reply to: LadyGreenEyes

I don't know but here in WA state, our libraries have had the barcode scan thing for a long time where you can check out your own books and dvds and order and track your checkouts online. To me it's no worse than Walmart or any other tracking system, and for once there is a useful purpose. There's tons of retailers using the RFID chips.

The library has my address anyway, so I don't care if they know where my checkout materials are. As far as them knowing what books I read, they know that information already, just by me checking them out, no chip required. So I fail to see the issue here. Maybe I'm just tired or not thinking sharply enough.

I have lots of issues with the RFID chips, for one they don't taste as good as potato chips...j/k but I don't like the idea of being tracked in every single thing any more than anyone else. What do you do? Go off the grid? Pay cash for everything? I remember when we used to pay with cash and checks. Not anymore. It really is becoming a cashless society, debit cards are king now.



posted on May, 5 2014 @ 02:57 AM
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The types of RFID that the library from your OP would use are known as low-powered RFID, and require an active powered sensor to read the chips. The chips have to be in proximity of the scanner of no more than around a metre, and usually much closer.

I wouldn't be too worried about being tracked by RFID. ;-j

The reality is that all companies and public/government bodies (other than the NSA which has done many illegal activities) that deal with sensored environments are so worried about being caught collecting data that innovation is being stifled, and many beneficial systems never make it to fruition because of strict privacy policies. The majority of investment goes into making data anonymous, often at the detriment of the system itself.

Basically, the issues are in the opposite direction than you are suggesting.



posted on May, 5 2014 @ 07:42 AM
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Do you have any idea of how much it would cost to equip every single DVD/CD produced with a legit RFID chip? It wouldn't be worth it. Seriously. Those are just magnetic anti-theft devices.



posted on May, 5 2014 @ 08:03 AM
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a reply to: Xaphan

... for a passive 96-bit EPC inlay, between 5 to 7 cents. To have them embedded in a fancy thermal transfer sticker with printed barcodes, about 15c each.

Depending on the freqency used, they can get a little more expensive.

If the library has 100,000 loanable books, then about $15,000 for all of them to be RFID'd... plus a discount for bulk. ;-j

Seems reasonable.
edit on 5-5-2014 by puzzlesphere because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 5 2014 @ 10:23 PM
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originally posted by: AreUKiddingMe
a reply to: LadyGreenEyes

I don't know but here in WA state, our libraries have had the barcode scan thing for a long time where you can check out your own books and dvds and order and track your checkouts online. To me it's no worse than Walmart or any other tracking system, and for once there is a useful purpose. There's tons of retailers using the RFID chips.

The library has my address anyway, so I don't care if they know where my checkout materials are. As far as them knowing what books I read, they know that information already, just by me checking them out, no chip required. So I fail to see the issue here. Maybe I'm just tired or not thinking sharply enough.

I have lots of issues with the RFID chips, for one they don't taste as good as potato chips...j/k but I don't like the idea of being tracked in every single thing any more than anyone else. What do you do? Go off the grid? Pay cash for everything? I remember when we used to pay with cash and checks. Not anymore. It really is becoming a cashless society, debit cards are king now.



A bar code is simply printed, and allows for faster check out. RFID chips can track, and that's very different. This is the same sort of chip that can be used to track a lost pet. Placing something like that in a library book seems open to abuse.

What to do is indeed the question. Most people don't have a practical way to go off the grid. Paying cash is possible, though, at least for now.



posted on May, 6 2014 @ 04:37 AM
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a reply to: LadyGreenEyes

An RFID is the equivalent of a barcode (a digital one) it just doesn't rub off, get obscured or crinkled.
RFID covers a very broad range of technologies, but generally they aren't used for tracking (there are much better technologies for that). Pet RFID's are usually non-powered and low frequency, and can be read from about a foot or so for identification purposes, not to track your animal.

While the range of RFID can get up to 300 feet, that requires a high powered reader on the receiving end, and on the chip end high frequency radio waves, battery power (non-powered RFID has a very short range) and a long antenna. Other factors are things like walls, the material the chip is attached to (metal effects range badly), and other environmental interference greatly reduce range.

On top of all that almost every government in the world has restrictions on the power and frequencies of both readers and chips, to minimise interference with other devices such as mobile phones.

The actual operational distance that a chip can be read is from 1 foot to about 30 feet, depending on the chip, and then only in controlled circumstances. Such as doorways, hand or table mounted readers, or livestock gates (as a few examples).

RFID isn't open to abuse any more than barcodes. RFID is really the least of your worries.

Hopefully this has cleared up some of your fears about this fairly harmless technology. ;-j



posted on May, 6 2014 @ 06:17 AM
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a reply to: AreUKiddingMe

Are you sure it is RFID ? It could just be what has been used for eons now, UPC barcodes that are scanned.

They are different, all though somewhat similar.

1)
Technology

RFID - uses radio frequency
Barcode - uses opitcal laser

2)
Read Range for RFID:

Passive UHF RFID:
- up to 40 feet (fixed readers)
- up to 20 feet (handheld readers)

Active RFID:
- up to 100's of feet or more

Barcode - several inches up to several feet

3)
Read Rate

RFID - 10's, 100's or 1000's simultaneously
Barcode only one at a time



4)
Read/Write

RFID - tags are Read/Write
Barcode - is read only

5)
Line of Site

RFID - not required
Barcode - is required

6)
Automation

RFID- most fixed readers don't require human interaction
Barcode - require a human to operate

7)
Interference

RFID - some metals and liquids can interfere
Barcode - obstructed barcode can't be read (torn barcode, dirty barcode, not properly printed barcode)


leolady



posted on May, 6 2014 @ 07:17 AM
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In the context of a library the RFID isnt any different than a barcode scanner really. It's just tracking inventory.

If your librarians are staying true to the whole "library bill of rights" thing then you dont have anything to worry about since they are not tracking any history of use. What you have out is only held as long as you have it out and when you return the items your history is purged unless you intentionally opt-in to record your history.

Now, that's how it's supposed to be done.

I'll tell you, having worked with libraries of all sorts for the past twenty years, that not all libraries hold your privacy is such high regard.

When the glorious Patriot Act came about there was a split among the libraries. Some were appalled and took privacy concerns to a whole new level while others caved and track everything for the glory of the state.

Others still, mostly in urban areas, carried a decidedly partisan attitude and only fought the PA while Bush was in office and then went full bore states witness as soon as Obama was elected tracking everything.

If this is a concern for you just talk to your librarians. Be nice about it because with some of these nuts the moment you express a little agitation they lock up full defensive mode.



posted on May, 6 2014 @ 07:24 AM
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A few seconds in a microwave oven tends to place a damper on any item that may carry an electronic label.

Not that I would recommend such a practice.

Just sayin'



posted on May, 7 2014 @ 11:57 PM
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originally posted by: puzzlesphere
a reply to: LadyGreenEyes

An RFID is the equivalent of a barcode (a digital one) it just doesn't rub off, get obscured or crinkled.
RFID covers a very broad range of technologies, but generally they aren't used for tracking (there are much better technologies for that). Pet RFID's are usually non-powered and low frequency, and can be read from about a foot or so for identification purposes, not to track your animal.


The point is that they can be used for tracking, however, and we have no way to know what is actually in these chips. I located a company that talks of these sorts of uses and more, in no time, with a simple search - so it can be done.


originally posted by: puzzlesphere
While the range of RFID can get up to 300 feet, that requires a high powered reader on the receiving end, and on the chip end high frequency radio waves, battery power (non-powered RFID has a very short range) and a long antenna. Other factors are things like walls, the material the chip is attached to (metal effects range badly), and other environmental interference greatly reduce range.

On top of all that almost every government in the world has restrictions on the power and frequencies of both readers and chips, to minimise interference with other devices such as mobile phones.

The actual operational distance that a chip can be read is from 1 foot to about 30 feet, depending on the chip, and then only in controlled circumstances. Such as doorways, hand or table mounted readers, or livestock gates (as a few examples).

RFID isn't open to abuse any more than barcodes. RFID is really the least of your worries.

Hopefully this has cleared up some of your fears about this fairly harmless technology. ;-j


The above linked site states:


We offer a number of different systems and tag types each suited to different objects and environments. For example, if the object is to be tracked inside a large building, or outdoors in a yard, or throughout the UK/Europe or across several of these environments then the appropriate system can be configured. Our systems use a variety of technologies to achieve this including GPS, RFID (Radio Frequency Identification), wireless and mobile phone networks.


Across a continent isn't a short distance, and the devices needed to track longer distances can be very small these days. As I stated, we cannot know the specifics of any such device, unless we had a hand in placing it. Perhaps not even then.



posted on May, 8 2014 @ 03:56 PM
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a reply to: LadyGreenEyes

The key phrase in your final quote is:

Our systems use a variety of technologies to achieve this including GPS, RFID (Radio Frequency Identification), wireless and mobile phone networks.


GPS, wireless and mobile networks can indeed be used to track across a large geographic area... these were the other technologies much better suited to tracking than RFID that I spoke of earlier, which is why this company utilises them for tracking.

RFID cannot be tracked by GPS or wireless network. I don't deny that there is tracking happening, and there indeed may be technology to be wary of in government hands, but the RFID used in a library book fundamentally can't achive what you are speaking of.

You should be much more worried about the mobile phone in everyone's pocket, and even with them, much of the data has been anonymised due to privacy concerns.

With a bit of education the specifications of all commercial devices can be known... the technology isn't as nefarious as you think... every electrical engineer out there can provide a very clear explanation of what a given piece of technology can achieve.

Cheers
edit on 8-5-2014 by puzzlesphere because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 8 2014 @ 04:21 PM
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I'm in the UK.

My local library uses RFID stickers on the inside back cover of their books. It makes life a lot more convenient. All I have to do is scan my membership card, place the book on a tray in a machine, not one by one, but all at once.

The machine will display "Thank you" and print out a ticket telling me when I need to return them, with each book itemised. No need to pester a librarian. The checkout process is literally over in seconds.

The checkin process is identical, except the machine tells me to deposit the books in a slot under the machine and a RFID reader makes sure I actually do so.

As for the RFID's being able to track what books I am borrowing... True, they can. But then, so could the older barcode method, and the even older "ticket" method, so taking that into accout, its no big deal.

As for RFID readers elsewhere being able to track the books remotely, again, the library has my address already, why would they need to track where the book are going?

Much paranoia about nothing IMO.



posted on May, 11 2014 @ 01:42 AM
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a reply to: BMorris

Oh, I am sure the whole process is very convenient, and thus welcome by most people. The tracking isn't something the libraries themselves would likely want to do, but it is something some government agency might do with the data. They could, for example, track anyone who checked out certain books, that they believed were a signal that the person was some sort of "problem". With all of the privacy issues today, that isn't unlikely at all.





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