Washington state representative Jeff Morris has announced plans to fight the “malicious use” of RFID devices in 2009, according to an Information Week news report. Morris plans to introduce a package of consumer protection bills when state lawmakers convene next week, in an effort to safeguard privacy from what he terms “spy technology” devices.
The lawmaker cites the spreading use of RFID chips in consumer products and government identification as a risk to privacy. Though he acknowledges the technology has its benefits, he fears consumers and citizens are losing control of who collects their personal information.
Morris wants to ban intentional scanning of people’s identification documents without prior specific consent, except in cases of emergencies or court-ordered electronic monitoring. He also wants products containing RFID chips to be marked clearly to alert consumers of their presence.
In 2008, Morris supported Washington’s creation of the country’s first law making it a felony to intentionally scan an RFID chip remotely without the bearer’s knowledge and consent. That law is limited to surreptitious scanning, or skimming, to commit fraud or identity theft.
The article didn’t mention how the legislation would deal with Washington State’s enhanced driver license. Washington was the first state to start issuing the IDs which contain a long-range RFID chip that is used when crossing and and sea borders.
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