MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Microchips implanted in human bodies could transform the way we tackle many everyday tasks.
Some workers in Sweden are already volunteering to have chips injected into their hands.
The technology can make some tasks easier and reduce the amount of personal items employees need to carry.
In a Stockholm business complex, employees gain access not with key cards, but with the wave of a hand.
“This is something you can use just like a key badge.”
At a recent tech conference, Hannes Sjoblad explained how a microchip implanted in his hand makes his life easier. It replaces all the keys and cards that used to clutter his pockets.
“I use my chip many times a day. For example, I use it to unlock my smart phone, to open the door to my office,” said Sjoblad, chief disruption officer at Epicenter.
Sjoblad calls himself a biohacker.
“We biohackers, we think the human body is a good start, but there is certainly room for improvement,” Sjoblad said.
The first step in that improvement is getting a microchip about size of a grain of rice slipped under the skin. Suddenly the touch of a hand is enough to tell the office printer this is an authorized user.
“It felt very scary, but at the same time it felt very modern,” one worker said.
The microchips are radio frequency identification tags – the same technology widely used in things like key cards.
The chips have been implanted in animals for years to help identify lost pets. Now the technology is moving to humans.
But each touch leaves a digital footprint and that can compromise privacy.
“We’re talking about a nonstop potential connection to my body, right, and I can’t turn it off, I can’t put it away, it’s in me. That’s a big problem,” said Ian Shore, executive editor at CNET.
Even a dedicated biohacker has concerns.
“It’s very easy to hack a chip implant… so my advice is don’t put your life secrets on a chip implant,” Sjoblad said.
But biohackers also predict the next generation of chips will save lives by monitoring health and fitness.
For now being chipped means never having to say you’re sorry you forgot your keycard.