A Swedish start-up tech company has invented a scannable microchip that is implanted in people’s arms and displays one's Covid-19 vaccination status.
This digital implant is designed to be embedded into people's arms so that a person’s Covid vaccine passport status pops up when scanned.
Created by the tech start up Dsruptive Subdermals, the controversial invention is made of a pre-programmed scannable implant 2 millimetres by 16 millimetres in size.
Hannes Sjoblad, managing director of Dsruptive Subdermals, told the AFP: "I have a chip implant in my arm, and I have programmed the chip so that I have my Covid passport on the chip, and the reason is that I always want to have it accessible.”
Costing 100 euros for a microchip, Sjoblad demonstrated the working of the device worked by scanning it with his phone.
When scanned, a PDF appears that shows all the details of his EU Digital Covid Certificate, which indicates his vaccination status and may also show whether the person has recently been tested positive for Covid.
Sjoblad said: "This means it is always accessible for me or for anyone else, really, who wants to read me.
"For example, if I go to the movies or go to a shopping centre, then people will be able to check my status even if I don't have my phone."
For the many people that would be sceptical of the device, Sjoblad assured that the implants are not tracking devices, and are only in use when they are scanned.
Sjoblad explained "If you understand how these implants work, they don't have a battery. They cannot transmit a signal by themselves. So they are basically passive. They sit there asleep.
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"They can never tell your location, they're only activated when you touch them with your smartphone, so this means they cannot be used for tracking anyone's location."
The invention received a lot of flak from people on the internet who described the microchip as "invasive".
One person commented: "Okay I’m definitely not an anti-vaxxer, I don’t believe in the mind control microchip conspiracy theory, and birds aren’t government cameras, but guys… this is a fantastically bad idea to make right now. Really bad bad bad bad idea."
Another person said: "Why would anyone pay to make something Iike this when your phone can do it for free in software? This is entirely stupid."
Doug Russel argued: "Look, I’m as pro-vaccine as anyone around…AND I’m pro-vaccine passport (on a voluntary basis only), but this just plays into the narrative of 'they want to track you' to conspiracy theorists."
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