EU Commissioner Ready To Draft Control Laws For RFID Tags

Oct. 16, 2006
Benefits acknowledged, but risks must be contained.

After a six-month study of RFID tags, the EU Information Society Commissioner, Viviane Reding, said she is ready to draft control laws based on the myriad of feedback she received. According to a BBC report, Reding said that citizens needed re-assuring that radio tags would not lead to large-scale surveillance.

"The large majority are willing to be convinced that RFID can bring benefits but they want to be reassured that it will not compromise their privacy," said Reding. "This is the deal that we have to strike if we want RFID to be accepted and widely taken up. The consultation shows that people are mainly afraid of losing control, of not being able to choose when and how they are exposed to risks," she said.

Of the 2,190 organizations and individuals who took part in the survey, only 15% felt that industry would do a good job of regulating itself. Consequently, 55% said that laws should be changed to ensure that the information collected from these tags would not be used incorrectly. Many expressed the wish to be able to destroy the tags if necessary.

It is expected that the new laws will be drafted next year.

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