A school district in San Antonio, Texas, is implementing mandatory RFID tracking of students in two of schools, John Jay High School and Anson Jones Middle School, at a cost of over $500,000. Andrea Hernandez, a student at one of these high schools, is refusing to wear the RFID badge. The Hernandez family and their supporters are protesting against the system over concerns of it being used to violate privacy rights.
San Antonio News Covers RFID Tracking Card Resistance on School Campuses
RFID tracking devices such as these students are to be forced to wear can be detected up to about 70 feet away. Some say the ranges may already be longer than this with recent RFID systems.
Although the basic underlying technology is very similar to proximity cards that been used widely in businesses for decades, most of those ID cards have to be in close physical proximity to a scanner (within a foot) for their RFID information to be captured. The badges being used in San Antonio reportedly contain batteries and higher power transmitters that can be tracked at much greater distances.
Some have been attacking this family as Christian wackos who believe the RFID badges are the “mark of the beast” mentioned in Revelations in the Bible. But there is plenty that can be said about the potential problems of abuse of this technology that has nothing to do with religion.