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3/28/2008
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Gayle Kesten
Gayle Kesten
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Washington State Bans RFID Data Theft

RFID Journal

The state of Washington has passed the country's first law that makes RFID data theft illegal, carrying with it a penalty of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.The legislation goes in effect in July, taking aim at an act called "skimming," which involves the intentional lifting of personal information from an RFID card for the purpose of fraud or identity theft. California is considering a similar bill, though with lighter consequences.

From a business perspective, RFID technology has implications for better supply-chain management; for example, retailers can better track their inventory and restock accordingly. From a consumer standpoint, many people might not even be aware that RFID chips are embedded in the devices and cards they carry. "This is just one small step to stake out some boundaries around our individual consumer rights before it's too late," said Washington state Rep. Jeff Morris, who sponsored the bill, in a statement.RFID Journal

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