European Commission consultation on Radio Frequency Identification Devices
Radio Frequency Identification Devices (RFID) are a method of automatic identification in which RFID tags or transponders store data which can be retrieved remotely. The tags contain silicon chips and antennae so that they can receive and respond to radio-frequency queries from an RFID transceiver. Active tags need an internal power source, whereas passive tags do not. RFID devices can report information such as their location, identity and history.
The growing number of business applications using RFID include transport and logistics, access control, real time location, supply chain management, manufacturing and processing, agriculture, medicine and pharmaceuticals. In future RFID devices will also be used in government (e.g. eGovernment, national defence and security) and the consumer field (e.g. personal safety, sports and leisure, smart homes and smart cities). This powerful technology raises serious concerns about personal privacy and security, technological reliability and international compatibility. To consider these problems, the European Commission launched a comprehensive public consultation with a high-level Conference on RFID at a trade fair in
A public debate will also be carried out via a set of workshops to be held in Brussels between March and June 2006. A draft working document will then be published for discussion in September 2006. The main issues to be addressed are consumer privacy, standards and interoperability, harmonisation of the frequency spectrum, intellectual property rights and future research needs. This may lead to an EC communication on RFID late 2006 or early 2007.
For more information about the debate and the consultation, and RFID developments in
HA to consider the role of RFID in HA operations and whether to contribute to the consultation.