The company plans on making August 1, 2017 voluntary implanting “chipping” day. The process is as easy as getting ones ear pierced. “The procedure isn’t surgical; the chip is injected. A licensed professional puts it in the skin between the pointer finger and thumb.” pointed out Chief Executive Todd Westby. “If you don’t want it anymore, you can remove it like a sliver.”
“It’s totally voluntary, the only incentive is we are picking up all the costs associated. There are around 55 people wanting to get chipped next week, but I think with all the buzz around it, it will grow to 100.” noted Westby. And it’s not able to spy on its employees when they’re not at work. “It’s a passive chip,” said Westby. “it isn’t like a chip in your dog. There is no GPS tracking. We can’t track when you go to the restroom, we can’t track when and where you are coming and going — it’s purely for convenience.”
Westby insures that the employees won’t have the chip with them after they leave the company. “We would inactivate the person’s account. It’s no different than a credit card. We won’t require people take out the chip because it can be used with different things but it won’t grant them access to our building or computers.”
But is hacking a risk? “It’s really nonexistent. It’s 100% encrypted so it’s more secure than other things connected to RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) readers, like phones or credit cards. There is 256-bit encryption and the only way you could get close to hacking would to be within six inches of the chip — but even then the data would be scrambled.”
The Future is Now
Three Square Market plans to sell the technology to other companies. They have partnered with a Swedish firm, BioHax International, to make the chip. They “foresee the use of RFID technology” to drive everything from opening doors, to logging into office computers. Westby said in a statement. “Eventually, this technology will become standardized allowing you to use this as your passport, public transit, all purchasing opportunities, etc.”
Patrick Mesterton, co-founder and chief executive of Epicenter, praises the microchip technology as a way to streamline work and other daily activities.
“You can do airline fares with it, you can also go to your local gym … so it basically replaces a lot of things you have other communication devices for, whether it be credit cards, or keys, or things like that,” he told the Australian ABC.