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‘Rice-sized’ Microchip That Stores Covid-19 Data Under Skin Developed in Sweden

By: Buzz Staff

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Last Updated: December 22, 2021, 12:15 IST

A simple syringe injection is used to implant the chip into the employee's hand with a click. (Representative Image, Credits: Reuters)

A simple syringe injection is used to implant the chip into the employee's hand with a click. (Representative Image, Credits: Reuters)

A Stockholm-based start-up Epicenter has developed a novel way to carry a Covid-19 vaccination passport — in the form of a microchip inserted beneath the skin.

A Stockholm-based start-up Epicenter has developed a novel way to carry a Covid-19 vaccination passport — in the form of a microchip inserted beneath the skin. The microchip can store a vaccination certificate in digital PDF form and other crucial data which can subsequently be read by any device that supports the near-field communication (NFC) protocol. In a video, Hannes Sjöblad, Epicenter’s chief distribution officer, can be seen using a chip implanted in his arm by merely waving his smartphone over it to check his vaccination status. Many venues, restaurants, pubs, music halls, and museums around the world are asking guests to provide proof of vaccination before entering. Epicenter aims to make presenting this data as simple as possible. The method is ‘totally reversible,’ according to Sjöblad, and does not need the use of a specific phone app.

Here is the video:

“Implants are very versatile technology that can be used for many different things, and right now it is very convenient to have COVID passport always accessible on your implant,” Sjöblad told Ruptly.

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Covid passports aren’t the only thing that can be kept on the microchips. Office IDs, bus tickets, and gym memberships are all examples of items that may be put into the body. In fact, it’s been used by Epicentre for years. According to Daily Mail, the firm reported in 2015 that more than 100 of its employees had been implanted with the microchip, which allows them to unlock doors, control printers, and buy smoothies with a wave of their hand.

A simple syringe injection is used to implant the chip into the employee’s hand with a click. Then, a little quantity of data passes between the two devices through electromagnetic waves when activated by a reader a few inches away. The use of microchips is becoming a fairly common practice in Sweden. Its people may not all have Covid-19 passports implanted in their hands yet, but they already have a microchip in them for one purpose or the other.

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first published:December 22, 2021, 12:15 IST
last updated:December 22, 2021, 12:15 IST