I hadn’t heard about it becoming official, but if the following story is true then it appears that the U.S. Government has started inserting RFID tags into paper money. If you’ve not heard about RFID (radio frequency identification) tags, it’s a relatively new technology developed ostensibly to help stores prevent theft and track what was purchased, but it could be used to track just about anything including how much cash you have in your purse or wallet when you walk into a store.
Talk of embedding RFID tags in currency aren’t anything new as the European Union has been talking about adding them to Euro bank notes for over a year now, but I’ve yet to hear of any plans by the U.S. Government to make use of the technology in American money so far and that makes the following article a bit surprising.
Want to share an event with you, that we experienced this evening.. Dave had over $1000 dollars in his back pocket (in his wallet). New twenties were the lion share of the bills in his wallet. We walked into a truck stop/travel plaza and they have those new electronic monitors that are supposed to say if you are stealing something. But through every monitor, Dave set it off. He did not have anything to purchase in his hands or pockets. After numerous times of setting off these monitors, a person approached Dave with a ‘wand’ to swipe why he was setting off the monitors.
Believe it or not, it was his ‘wallet’. That is according to the minimum wage employees working at the truck stop! We then walked across the street to a store and purchased aluminum foil. We then wrapped our cash in foil and went thru the same monitors. No monitor went off.
We could have left it at that, but we have also paid attention to the European Union and the ‘rfid’ tracking devices placed in their money, and the blatant bragging of Walmart and many corporations of using ‘rfid’ electronics on every marketable item by the year 2005.
Dave and I have brainstormed the fact that most items can be ‘microwaved’ to fry the ‘rfid’ chip, thus elimination of tracking by our government.
So we chose to ‘microwave’ our cash, over $1000 in twenties in a stack, not spread out on a carasoul. Do you know what exploded on American money?? The right eye of Andrew Jackson on the new twenty, every bill was uniform in it’s burning… Isnt that interesting?
It’s entirely possible this story isn’t true or is blowing things out of proportion and it’s also true that while things such as scanning how much money you have on you without your knowledge are possible, it doesn’t mean systems are in place already to do so. Still, if it’s true it’s rather discomforting to think this was slipped in without any public notification.
Update: Checking the Bureau of Engraving and Printing’s homepage about the new $20 bill I couldn’t find anything that directly confirms or denies the presence of RFID in the money. Though I did find the following blurb that sounded close to it on this page describing the money’s security features:
- Also, a machine-readable feature has been incorporated for the blind. It will facilitate development of convenient scanning devices that could identify the denomination of the note.