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Urgent Wal-Mart To Begin Item-Level Tagging Clothing With RFID
By Katherine Albrecht, Ed.D.
July 26, 2010
Today the Wall Street Journal broke an enormous story: Wal-Mart, the nation's largest retailer, has declared war on our privacy. The giant retailer has announced it will begin placing item-level RFID (Radio Frequency IDentification) tracking tags on clothing sold in its stores.
THIS IS HUGE NEWS. It is the first step to the planned roll-out of the Internet of Things, where global corporations like IBM, Procter & Gamble, and Wal-Mart's technology partner NCR plan to equip every product with a tracking device and use a network of RFID readers to monitor and observe YOU everywhere you go. It is the frightening world detailed in our book "Spychips: How Major Corporations and Government Plan to Track Your Every Move with RFID," and it is finally coming to pass.
Unless we stop it, Wal-Mart's roll-out is scheduled to begin next month.
Here is the Wall Street Journal article:
And here is a WSJ poll where you can make your views known (today only):
As you know, RFID is a powerful tracking technology that raises unprecedented privacy concerns. Wal-Mart's plan does more than just threaten our privacy -- it is poised to become a direct threat to our freedom and civil liberties, as I will describe in future emails.
It is imperative that we immediately act to oppose Wal-Mart's RFID rollout. I have placed calls and given Wal-Mart an opportunity to respond, but as of this afternoon, Wal-Mart corporate executives and media representatives have not returned my calls. In the meantime, we are f formulating a response to Wal-Mart's plans that will protect consumers. I will keep you posted on this breaking story.
Katherine Albrecht, Ed.D.
Founder and Director of CASPIAN Consumer Privacy
Co-Author of Spychips
CASPIAN (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering) is a grass-roots consumer group fighting retail surveillance schemes since 1999 and irresponsible RFID use since 2002. With thousands of members in all 50 U.S. states and over 30 countries worldwide, CASPIAN seeks to educate consumers about marketing strategies that invade their privacy and encourage privacy-conscious shopping habits across the retail spectrum.