VeriChip gets under skin
Over the last two years we have watched with interest the
development of two microchip-based devices from Applied Digital Solutions -
Digital Angel and more recently VeriChip. It has been fascinating to follow the
progress of these devices, from the initial press releases through to an actual
working product, which is now being marketed in the US. Of further interest, is
the general acceptance by the public of this potentially intrusive technology
following the events of September 11.
An article from the Associated Press on the 26
February 2002 is headlined, "Florida firms plans to seek government's OK for
ID use - A Florida technology company is poised to ask the government for
permission to market a computer ID chip that could be embedded beneath a person's
skin. For airports, nuclear power plants and other high-security facilities, the
immediate benefits would be a closer-to-foolproof security system. But privacy
advocates warn that the chip could lead to encroachments on civil liberties."
The Sunday Express on 17 March 2002 asks us, "Is the
future under this boy's skin?"
"When Princess Diana suggested that Prince William should
have a microchip tracking device implanted in his body in case he was kidnapped,
it sounded as if she had watched too many science fiction films...
But seven years after the late princess put forward the idea
-– amid fears that the IRA planned to seize the future king -– a teenager
really is about to have a chip inserted beneath his skin that could do just what
Derek Jacobs, a 14-year-old computer genius, has volunteered
-– along with his mother Leslie and father Jeffrey -– to become the first
family to test a revolutionary device called the VeriChip.
The tiny £130 microchip - pill shaped, encased in silicone
and just 12mm in length - can be injected into place. Its built-in radio antenna
then transmits data such as a person's contact details or full medical history
- in the case of sensitive data, suitably encrypted - to a £1,000 scanner...
VeriChip builds on technology already used to implant
identifying microchips in family pets, to allow lost animals to be retrieved. In
the past 15 years, four million pets have been chipped in the US...
Now the US computer company behind the invention -– Applied
Digital Solutions, based in Palm Beach, Florida - wants to use the technology on
humans, initially for medical purposes.
"Two years from now we hope to see this type of technology
as common as X-ray machines in hospitals," says Keith Bolton, the firm's
chief technology officer...
Equally, a small adaptation to another ADS invention -– a
global tracking device called Digital Angel, at present clipped to a belt, will
soon enable implants to be tracked anywhere in the world...
Jeffrey Jacobs... like the rest of his family, is alive to
the danger that the VeriChip could result in Big Brother controlling his life.
But he still feels the potential benefits far outweigh the risks...
Civil rights groups have warned that it is the thin end of
Now we find that the final barrier for use of VeriChip has
been removed in another article taken from FoxNews on 5 April 2002 "FDA
clears implantable chip - A company plans to begin selling a computer ID chip
that can be embedded beneath people's skin, now that the Food and Drug
Administration has said it will not regulate the implant as long as it
contains no medical data."
With this barrier removed, the first "chipping" procedure
has taken place, as reported by the Associated Press on 10 May 2002: "Family
Gets Chips Implant in Study - With a painless syringe-prick in their upper arms,
a Florida family on Friday became the first recipients of tiny, computer chip
Jeff and Leslie Jacobs, along with their 14-year-old son,
Derek, had the chips, about the size of a grain of rice, implanted in about a
minute under local anesthesia...
The Jacobs family's chips contain only telephone numbers and
information about previous medications...
For now, patients or their families would have to tell
emergency medical workers that a chip had been implanted, VeriChip officials
said. If the use of such chips ever become commonplace, emergency workers might
automatically scan for the devices..."
So what does the future hold for this technology? In a news
release on 26 April 2002 from Applied Digital Solutions, the inventors of
VeriChip and Digital Angel, we read: "Applied Digital Solutions to accelerate
development of a Subdermal GPS 'Personal Location Device' -– Working
prototype expected in seven months...
Commenting on the announcement, Scott R. Silverman, President
of Applied Digital Solutions said: "Based on what we're hearing from
potential customers and partners around the world, the time has come for PLD -–
our new personal location device. Back in October 2000 we said Digital Angel
would concentrate on a wearable GPS device, and that's exactly what Digital
Angel has done...
At the same time, ever since we announced VeriChip(TM) last
December, we've heard strong demand for development of a subdermal GPS device.
We're hearing this from all over the world, but particularly in Latin America
where the tragedy of commercial kidnappings has become rampant. We've decided
that accelerating the development of PLD is a valuable service to enhancing
personal safety and security."...
Mr. Silverman continued: "We're committed to providing
customers with a full range of personal safeguard technologies -- technologies
that enhance personal safety, security and peace of mind. Customers can choose
the wearable Digital Angel device. They can choose to "get chipped(TM)" with
our VeriChip medical and security identification implant. And now they'll have
another option -– the implantable PLD for those who want the added security of
a personal GPS location feature."..."
Interesting how far they have come after ADS company
spokesman Dr. Lawrence Webber released a statement less than twelve months ago
maintaining that the company had "no plan at this time for implant
Although not related directly to Digital Angel, an article
taken from The Sun newspaper on 22 March 2002 shows us how
fast implant technology is progressing: "First bionic man - A Professor has
been turned into the world's first cyborg by a £500,000 operation.
Surgeons plumbed a microchip into nerves in Kevin Warwick's
arm to make him part man-part robot. Now Prof Warwick's nervous system can be
wired up to a computer. It will record movements like his fingers wiggling -–
plus feelings such as shock and pain...
Prof Warwick, 48, said yesterday: "What we're doing is
historic and momentous. It is going to change the world."...
The experts also aim to connect his nervous system to wife
Irena's to see if they can make each other's fingers move. Irena, 53, said:
"If it helps disabled or blind people it's a good thing."
Does all this information give you the reader any thoughts of
a Biblical passage along this same line?
How about Revelation 13:16-18 given to the apostle John by
Almighty God in the year 96 AD. "And he causeth all, both small and great,
rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in
their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark,
or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him
that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a
man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six."
VeriChip and Digital Angel are very significant steps in the
fulfilment of Bible prophecy. What was seen as 'far out' science fiction a
few short years ago, is today's technology... Thanks to the Word of God, we
know ahead of time what comes next...better still, we know 'where to find
security'. Understand please, there is no escape from this system -– except
in the Divine protection of God.