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Radio frequency identification tags are not fully catching on, thanks to objections from Alan Watt, Katherine Albrecht, and others who have been hammering away for years at RFID’s threats to privacy and civil liberties.
For global corporations and the US Department of Homeland Security, who remain eager to track individuals, that means it’s time to shift their efforts back to barcodes.
MIT scientists last week said they’ve overcome the barcode’s strongest privacy protections–its close read range, and fussy need to be scanned, line-of-sight. Now, using the camera in a mobile phone, a spy, or hacker, will be able to scan the barcode label on any object, or person, at an angle, and up to 60 feet away.