Innovation

What is a Human Microchip and How Does it Work?

Human Microchip
Written by Shikha Mehta

How would life be if your hand was all you needed to pay your bills? Well, a human microchip can actually make this imagination turn into reality! A microchip inserted in your hand not just replaces your credit card, but also your keys, tickets, and passport.

So far, this little piece of storage was a part of a computer. However, now it can be a part of you too! To understand how it’s really possible, let’s see from scratch what this is all about.

What do you mean by a Human Microchip?

A microchip is a device that stores information. It’s smaller than your fingernail but can keep more data than your own memory. While a normal microchip is inserted in cell phones and laptops, a human microchip is inserted inside your body.

This chip uses RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology to communicate information with other devices.

The function is just the same: It stores information which certain devices can scan. Of course, the sensitive information is encrypted for your safety and privacy. It’s the location of the microchip that makes it different: underneath your skin.

Another point of difference lies in the size and shape. A normal microchip is a tiny rectangle, almost the size of your little finger’s nail. On the other hand, a human implant is a capsule that’s almost as tiny as a grain of rice.

What are Microchips Used for in Humans?

It all started in Sweden, not very long ago to make life even simpler for humans. The rush we go through every day makes us forget our essentials at home: house keys, wallets or ID cards.

To avoid troubles like getting late for work, missing your flight or being locked out, this little capsule actually came to the rescue. It can store the following:

  • Medical information
  • Debit and credit card credentials
  • The private key of your bitcoin wallet
  • Codes that can unlock doors and cars
  • Information in ID cards, passports, and other legal documents
  • Tickets booked by you using the ID connected to the microchip

Basically, if you have a microchip underneath your skin, you won’t need to carry anything related to the above. With a swipe of a hand or by getting it close to the scanner, you can make payments, unlock doors, travel or get treated.

Let’s see how this works.

Where is the Chip Implanted in the Body?

To start with, you need to inject the little capsule into your body. Currently, there are two places where you can implant the microchip:

  1. The junction between your thumb & index finger on your wrist
  2. On the right arm, between your shoulder and elbow

These aren’t given to you like a tetanus injection, it’s a lot more painful. The microchip is an external device coming in contact with your tissues. It’ll hurt like a bullet. However, the pain doesn’t last long, I can tell you that.

People who have the chip inserted in their hands are happy with their experience. Once the body adjusts with the chip, you won’t even feel it. So, the pain is temporary but the benefit lasts forever!

Apart from your hand, scientists have also been experimenting on another body part where a chip can be implanted: your brain! It can be on the surface or cortex of your brain. It’s being designed for your health benefit, which will be able to track tumors and germs inside your body.

Working of the RFID Chip

Not every microchip can do everything I mentioned. There’s more work needed than you think. Let’s explain this step by step and put it simply:

  • Enabling microchip to unlock: If you have a habit of forgetting house keys or car keys, you can make your doors capable of opening with RFID microchips instead of mechanical keys. That’s quite a lot of work from your end.
  • Storing information: You want to get a chip inside your body, you need to store data in it first. This requires linking the device with your bank account, government IDs or other details. Or, you need to ensure it has the codes that can unlock your doors.
  • Injecting the microchip: Though painful, the procedure is simple. However, it is recommended to get it done from a medical professional than a piercer or doing it yourself.
  • Enjoy the benefit you want: One RFID chip can only contain one unique code. So, you can’t have a credit card and a key stored in the same chip. Suppose, you enabled it to be a key, only your door will be able to read it; a vending machine won’t get any information out of it.

Can GPS Implant for Humans Take Place?

Yes, I know this question has been running in your mind ever since you landed on the page. I’m sorry if my answer disappoints you, but human microchips aren’t cool enough to track them yet.

However, scientists are working on it. Though it can be a dangerous threat to your security, it is being designed for safety.

You must be wondering how? Well, scientists are trying to design a chip that can be tracked by your cell phone. That can benefit you in two ways:

  • You can track your children, so they are never lost or in danger.
  • The police can shoot one into a criminal to ensure he doesn’t escape.
  • If this chip can go into a human, it can be used on your pet too. So, you’ll never lose its track.

Of course, if a GPS chip can be used to catch a criminal, it can also be used by one to kidnap, kill or steal.

Apart from that, tracking live location needs batteries. So, you can’t implant tracking chips in humans. The technology is yet to be discovered.

Considering technical, privacy and safety-related issues, we don’t have human GPS chips in the market yet.

Consequences of Human Microchip Implantation

Now, once you implanted a microchip for any given reason, what’s next? What if you suddenly want to get rid of it? Here’s the thing:

  • Removing a microchip isn’t as simple as implanting it. You’ll have to cut open the skin and take it out – 10 times more painful than the implantation. Your body will take time to heal afterward too.
  • As of now, these chips are completely safe. However, what if hackers crack the code inside one day? The very microchip you used to keep your credit card away from the eyes of a thief is now accessible to them!

So, you can see that there’s a high risk involved here. You need to go for it only if you’re 100% confident about it. As of now, these chips aren’t hackable. Neither do all countries have this technology widely known.

So, given the pros and cons, would you consider having a human microchip in your hand?

About the author

Shikha Mehta

I discovered my talent in writing while I was in high school. Since then, I discovered the joy of sharing your knowledge with people around you. This is the reason why I love making my contributions to Insights of Technology. Being a certified content writer, I have been writing on several topics, science & technology being one of my favorites.

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