Tool of the devil is so convenient

My friend Christina just put an RFID implant into her body.  She has allowed me to repost her blog on it here.

I love both technology and body modification. As if you couldn’t tell.

The other day I decided to implant an RFID microchip into my right hand. I used an AVID injector kit (the same thing they use to inject microchips into your pets), and replaced the animal RFID tag with a Phillips/NXP Hitag S 2048 2 x 12mm glass RFID tag. It looks like this:

Philips Hitag. Photo credit:

It’s this size, by comparison:

Verimed RFID tag

RFID implants have a number of uses, the main use of which is to identify pets that come to animal shelters. Several companies such as VeriChip have marketed RFID chip implants for humans as a means to access medical records. While the idea seemed promising to some, the idea of having an implantable microchip generated a lot of controversy, such that VeriChips are no longer produced. This far, only a few hundred people have microchip implants, and even less have implanted themselves.

An RFID chip typically contains a programmed number which can be read by an RFID scanner. The chips are programmed with a unique 10-digit ID code (Hex 0-9 A-F) and in the case of my particular chip, can be reprogrammed with a writer (which I ordered last night)

I wanted to do this for several reasons. I love the fusion of technology and body modification. I like to tinker with ideas. Hobbyists have used RFID implants to open doors without keys, switch on lights, and log in to computers, among other things. I’m planning on using it for a number of those.

Unfortunately, the video I took of the implantation process became corrupted on my Droid X (CURSE YOU!) and so until I figure out if I can fix it, the video will be sadly unavailable. A few of my friends want implants as well, so you might have to settle for video of their implants instead of video of mine. It more or less went like this: I opened up a package of sterile gloves. I placed the sterile injector kit on the field made by the glove packaging. I don’t have an autoclave, so I settled for soaking the HITAG chip in a sterilizing solution and then boiling it for ten minutes on my stove. I swabbed my right hand with an iodine swab. I placed the cleaned Hitag on the sterile field, donned a glove and then switched the tag that came with the injector kit for the Hitag. Chris donned the other glove and pinched my skin where I had instructed him to do so earlier. I pushed the needle of the injector kit into my hand and under the skin, pushed the plunger to insert the tag through the needle, and then withdrew the needle. It didn’t really hurt much – probably about as bad as a blood draw. It was slightly sore for the rest of the night, and the next day I pretty much resumed my normal activities. The tag happens to be located right at the end and at a 90 degree angle to a scar on my hand, making it very easy to locate. A week later and it seems to be doing fine. *

Every time I am reminded that I implanted an RFID tag into my own hand, it makes me really happy, just knowing it’s there. I can’t wait to start experimenting with it – I haven’t even gotten to read it yet to see exactly what code was originally assigned to it. I’m hoping the research lab I work at (which uses RFID cards plus keypad entry for building access) will program me into their system, so I can enter without a keyfob.

There’s another interesting aspect of RFID that definitely needs to be mentioned, considering the primary focus of this blog: A lot of people think that implantable RFID tags are the Mark of the Beast.

You know… the Mark of the Beast (Insert horribly racist/sexist/classist picture found using Google Image Search here):

Racism/sexism/classism brought to you by

Apparently Revelation 13:11-18 says, “Then I saw a second beast, coming out of the earth. It had two horns like a lamb, but it spoke like a dragon. 12 It exercised all the authority of the first beast on its behalf, and made the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast, whose fatal wound had been healed. 13 And it performed great signs, even causing fire to come down from heaven to the earth in full view of the people. 14 Because of the signs it was given power to perform on behalf of the first beast, it deceived the inhabitants of the earth. It ordered them to set up an image in honor of the beast who was wounded by the sword and yet lived. 15 The second beast was given power to give breath to the image of the first beast, so that the image could speak and cause all who refused to worship the image to be killed. 16 It also forced all people, great and small, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hands or on their foreheads, 17so that they could not buy or sell unless they had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of its name”

There are organizations out there who exist for the sole purpose of opposing human (and sometimes pet) microchip implants. Sometimes their opposition is labeled as a human rights issue, and often their opposition is religious, born out of fear that the chips represent the Mark of the Beast. There are currently far more Facebook groups online opposing RFID than there are people in favor of RFID, and some of their members are pretty rabid and threatening.

So there you have it. I have taken on the Mark of the Beast.

Me, with band-aid covering implant site.

The picture above is me, hours after the implant, with band-aid covering the implant site.

Coupled with the fact that I am an atheist who has (repeatedly) denied/blasphemed the Holy Spirit and I have the mark, it’s safe to say that the Christian god, were he real, would doom me forever. I have more realistic things to worry about.

In the picture below, you can see the implant pretty clearly under my skin. If I ball my hand into a fist and use my index finger to push on my hand web, I can make the implant visible under the skin. It’s the dark huge-grain-of-rice looking thing between the arrows. If my hand it relaxed, you can’t tell it’s there. The other scars on my hand are old.

Right hand with RFID implant

*P.S. This information for educational purposes only. this is not to be taken as instruction or recommendation. I am not liable if you decide to implant yourself.

About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.

  • Paul

    Ouch. Looking at the length of that thing, the site where it has been put, and the fact that it is made of glass has me thinking that it is only a matter of time before it cracks in situ, leaving her with jagged pieces of glass under her skin.

  • Tara

    Very cool. Kinda makes me want to get one so I can pretend I have Jedi powers and unlock doors…

  • B-Lar

    I think that those objecting purely for “mark of the beast” reasons are asshats. However, it is a concern that one day the majority of humans might be chipped and crucial social functions might be denied to those who are not, or who dont have the “right” chip.

    I know that the idea of prophecy is dumb, but it would be interesting if this was predicted back in 100AD by a guy who had no idea what form such a “mark” would take, but knew about how humans operate, and recognised that such a “mark” would be desirable for those who would love to control and subjugate a population.
    It seems a bit orwellian to me… but there will be no problem as long as shops still accept cash, and I dont think they will stop doing that in my lifetime.

    • Chris


      How intellectually superior of you to denigrate Biblical prophecy regarding the coming system whereby everyone will be required to to receive a mark in their right hand or forehead in order to buy or sell. Your arrogance and wilfull denial in the face of such a prophecy coming to fulfillment is astounding. You are no doubt blissfully ignorant of the other end time prophecies that are all heading toward convergent fulfillment, and no doubt will refuse to accept the evidence of prophecy, even though their fulfillment is staring you in the face. Good luck on Judgement Day, you’ll need it.

      • anteprepro

        Bit of a moron, aren’t you? First off, you are directing your ragewank about prophecy towards somebody who explicitly said that they would be impressed if a “prophecy” from 1900 years ago predicted something involving technology that they couldn’t conceive of. Second off, you’re still stupid. You’re conveniently ignoring the first wounded beast and the second beast with horns and the voice of the dragon who gives breath/a voice to the first beast, forces worship of the first beast, summons fire from the sky, and the fact that all these marks need to either have the beast’s name or the number 666 on it (and it will need to either be put on the right hand or forehead. Neck or left hand= Prophecy Fail!)

        So, what exactly, out of all that nonsensical prophecy that no-one seems to care about, is actually going to be fulfilled? A mark/engraving will be a requirement for business transactions? Considering the fact that this ignores all the other specifics of this prophecy (it will be the name/number of the beast, it will be on right-hand/forehead, the implication by the term “mark” that the “mark” will be visible), and also considering all the other failed/non-sensical prophecies, that really isn’t that impressive of a prediction. It only seems profound and amazing to people because they are honing in on the shit that seems plausible and makes sense based on our current knowledge and ignoring everything that doesn’t. Basically, confirmation bias.

        Good luck on dying without seeing the apocalypse you are salivating over, asshat.

        • Chris

          B-Lar explicitly said “I know that the idea of prophecy is dumb”, and then went on to say that he/she thought it would be “interesting” if some guy back in 100AD wrote this down because he realised that it would be a good form of control. So, by calling the idea of prophecy dumb, especially in the light of it being in the process of being fulfilled, demonstrates his/her bias against it.

          I’m not ignoring any facts about the other prophecies. All of what is written in Revelation 13 will come to pass. The RFID implant and cashless system we are heading towards are merely laying the foundations for the Mark of the Beast, it is not yet fulfilled. Just because you don’t understand the symbology of the prophecies doesn’t mean they aren’t coming to fruition. Hint the first beast is the coming political/religious system (NWO under the RCC), and the second beast is the antichrist himself.

          Also, did I not say that other end-time prophecies were in the process of being fulfilled? Here are some examples:

          Luke 21 – return of Jerusalem to the Jews. This happened in 1967 during the Six Day war. The Jews were exiled into all the world for almost 1900 years and their survival as a people and eventual return to Jerusalem were never guaranteed. Luke 21:31-32 indicates that Christ’s return will happen within one generation (70-80 years) of the return of Jerusalem returning to the Jews.

          Rev 16:3-4 – Rivers and Seas dying (becoming as the blood of a dead man, which carries no life). The oceans and rivers are approaching ecological collapse due to acidification, massive dead zones in the oceans, the pacific plastic soup, oil slicks, over fishing, red and blue-green algal blooms, etc…

          Rev 16:8-9 – the Sun being given the power to scorch the skins of men. Global warming, Ozone holes and extreme UV. The activities of modern industry and the wholesale destruction of much of the worlds forest is destroying the atmosphere that protects us from the Sun’s harmful radiation. This will continue to get worse as we continue to destroy the environment.

          Rev 16:12-16 – The river Euphrates being dried up to allow the armies of the east to meet at a place in Hebrew which is called Armageddon (the mountain of Har-Megiddo in Israel). Turkey, which is the source of the river Euphrates, has built the Ataturk dam complex and in January of 1990, for the first time in history, stopped the flow of the river (for 30 days).

          I have just cited several end-time prophecies that are all on track for convergent fulfillment within one generation of Jerusalem returning to the Jews (along with the Mark of the Beast). Given that these prophecies were written 1900+ years ago and are now all coming to convergent fulfillment, it is clear evidence of the divine inspiration of the Bible.

          Ignore these prophecies and their fulfillment at your own peril.

          PS: I’m not salivating over the apocalypse, I simply let my frustration at his/her willful dismissal of prophecy get the better of me when replying to B-Lar.

  • Compuholic

    RFID chips are awesome. This chip is pretty big though. I’m not sure if I want such a monster in me. What is the range of it?

    The only thing missing now are the sensor placed all over the house. Then you can turn on the light/music/etc. by entering the room.