These chips, which are the size of a grain of rice, would allow entrance to the office, logging into computers and buy snacks at the office vending machines, pay for purchases, and store medical information. Three Square Markets expected that over 50 employees would sign up for the procedure, and were pleased to find that 80 employees had already signed up for the implant. These microchips utilize Radio Frequency Identification, which allows users to make purchases, sign in to their computer, and pass through security with just a wave of their hand. The procedure involves implantation through a needle and is said to barely hurt at all, claims Westby. If they change their mind afterward, they have the option to remove the chip as well.
While many have their concerns regarding these devices, these chips were approved for use by the Food and Drug Administration in 2004. There are also concerns about whether or not these microchips can be hacked. Westby has said that these devices are unable to be hacked because they do not possess an Internet connection. For those who are worried about the company tracking their employees, these microchips do not come equipped with a global positioning system. Three Square Market is receiving these chips from BioHax International, a Swedish technology company, and the chips cost $300 each. While Three Square Markets is the first American organization to use these chips, the Swedish company Epicenter has been implanting their employees with the same chip since last year. Those who have the chip have significantly enjoyed the convenience the chip provides, and ask other coworkers if they have been chipped or not.
Many may look at this development and think implanting ones workers with microchips is weird and invasive, but there appear to be substantial benefits for undergoing the procedure. With technology continually progressing day by day, implanting microchips in one’s hand could become standardized in the future. These microchips have been able to remove the small inconveniences that come with handling credit cards and ID badges. With a simple wave of one’s hand, they could pay for clothes or go through security without having to rummage through their bags or wallet searching for the right card. While there are still some who have concerns regarding the possible loss of privacy, these microchips could become a valuable tool in the future, especially for consumers. Three Square Markets has yet to officially implant these chips into any of their employees as of today, so we will have to wait for how the workers respond to their new implants.
Sources: Tech company workers agree to have microchips implanted into their hands, A Wisconsin company offers to implant remote-control microchips in its employees, Installing microchips in employees is ‘the right thing to do’, CEO says