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Tuesday, August 15, 2006

What is e-Passport

Now a day’s news about e-passport is making the rounds. So what is this e-passport?
Well this is a new technology for making the passports more secure (I doubt). Research has been going on for past few years in US and some other countries for the implementation of this technology.

Basically a RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) chip will be embedded in the back cover of the passport. The New passport will be similar to the current passport and photo of the holder will be present on it. The chip will basically contain all the information of the holder along with digital photo in it which can be scanned by a reader. In event of chip being damaged the new passport can still be used like ordinary passport.

The reason why this is being done is to make forging of passports virtually impossible. As claimed the specially designed chips will contain some kind of key that cannot be hacked.

But there are apprehension regarding the security of such passports, as they work on radio frequency identification technology, fears are the personal information can be read from a distance by anyone carrying a reader capable of reading RF chips. Even though the RFID chips can be read from about 20-30 feet’s (240-360 inches), these specially designed chips can be read only from 4 inches and not more.

As per the plan, US might be able to implement the system completely by the end of 2006, but people in US are not too much confident of this technology and still it is very highly debated among the authorities.

Also as per the latest reports some consultant has been successfully able to clone the chips though he was not able to make any changes to the data. So lets wait and watch the vulnerabilities of this technology.

4 Comments:

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Anonymous Scott Ryan said...

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2:58 AM  

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