RFID Virus-Infected Cat

April 1, 2007
Computer virus-infected cats, "spychipped" $20 bills, fashion police to use RFID, passport-triggered bombs, RFID a hazard to U.S. ports -- which one of

Computer virus-infected cats, "spychipped" $20 bills, fashion police to use RFID, passport-triggered bombs, RFID a hazard to U.S. ports -- which one of these is a bogus article? And which, if any, has any real merit? And how much?

Not sure? Then maybe you should check with the authoritative source on all things RFID: AIM Global.

While the above "stories" may make great headlines in the tabloids, they're embarrassing in respectable media. Consider these instead: RFID secures U.S. ports, RFID saves elderly patient who's wandered off, RFID to protect coal miners, RFID ensures emergency evacuation, RFID tire-pressure monitors help prevent roll-overs. Given the chance, the real news about RFID can also provide compelling human-interest headlines -- they're just not such great tabloid fodder.
There is a real lack of understanding among the public and media of the facts about RFID (radio frequency identification) technology and applications. To help overcome that information gap, AIM Global announced a collaboration among leading RFID companies to more proactively publicize stories that spotlight applications, consumer benefits, and ongoing industry activities for self-regulation. AIM Global will direct the PR efforts as well as establish a "rapid response team" to correct misleading or inaccurate reports about the technology and its applications.

Few consumers and only a handful of journalists understand the existing and potential uses of RFID to guarantee safety, to improve service and convenience, and reduce costs in their everyday lives. And few are aware of the industry's efforts to address both privacy concerns and security issues. As a result, rather than anticipating the next announcement about a potential benefit of RFID, there is a growing distrust of RFID, the industry itself, and businesses or government agencies that might deploy it.

Because RFID is a complex family of technologies, each with its own attributes and limitations, understanding the subject matter requires more than culling reports from the Web. But this level of technical expertise and real-world insight isn't available to the vast majority of journalists on whom the public relies. Or is it?

AIM Global's "Get the Truth Out" initiative is designed to address this lack of knowledge. As the global resource on RFID and other automatic identification and mobility technologies, AIM Global is uniquely positioned to offer accurate and unbiased information about the potential and limitations of RFID technology. Since many applications can be equally well served by other AIM technologies such as bar code, magnetic stripe, biometrics, AIM offers balanced information about these technologies within the context of real-world business practice and technical capabilities.

"While we all agree that there is no 'quick fix' to educate the public about RFID, we believe that an ongoing, proactive campaign that focuses on exposing consumers to real-life uses, benefits and limitations is the right thing to do," says Dan Mullen, president, AIM Global. "Rather than focus on technical explanations for a largely non-technical audience, we need to provide examples of how this family of technologies is benefiting lives today and will do even more tomorrow."

Source: AIM Global