Digital Agenda for Europe
A Europe 2020 Initiative

Small chips with big potential: New EU recommendations make sure 21st century bar codes respect privacy

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Europeans should be able to have control over smart chips, a worldwide market set to grow five times over in the next decade, while still being able to easily use them to make everyday life simpler. There are already over 6 billion smart chips, microelectronic devices that can be integrated into a variety of everyday objects from fridges to bus passes. With Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology, they can process data automatically when brought close to 'readers' that activate them, pick up their radio signal and exchange data with them. They are in the passes you use to enter your office and the smart cards that pay highway tolls. Today, the European Commission adopted a set of recommendations to make sure that everyone involved in the design or operation of technology using smart chips respects the individual's fundamental right to privacy and data protection, contained in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union proclaimed on 14 December 2007.
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Last updated on 10/04/2015