Biohacking for Newbies: All You Ever Wanted to Know About Getting an NFC Chip Implant

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How is it really any crazier than any other kind of body mod, especially when the outcome is more than visual aesthetic?

Methinks it’s only particularly crazy when people start saying things like

I’d become one step closer to being a cyborg.


You’re doing The Great Beast’s work for him, you know.


That’s exactly what my tattoo says!


Thanks for writing this up! An interesting step to take. One note - to be really effective, a Faraday cage has to be fully sealed. Radio waves are a little like flies, in that they will find a way in or out if there’s a crack anywhere. Since the glove is probably not completely sealed around the hand or arm, it may add some nice attenuation but won’t be a complete seal. I’ve spent enough of a career keeping the little buggers from getting out of electronic products (the FCC and EU have pretty stern specifications that limit “unintentional radiators”) to know this.

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I’ve already got my share of titanium implanted. I don’t need to add to that collection.

I’d rather they focus on things like…say…tripling the number of sensory neurons in certain places.

What about other non- medically necessary enhancements, like IUDs?
Seems an odd place for an NFC chip, to me.

Like on the belly, for tickling?


sure…something like tickling might be involved


Wait, wait, NFC!? I wish I’d read this yesterday when I got a KFC implant. I suppose I should have been suspicious when they battered it before injecting it… :-/




I’m envisioning a glass encased micro-LED and battery chargeable by a local non-wired device. I imagine you could put rows/matrices of lights under the skin and control them (on/off, color, timing) by app and have all sorts of glow-in-the-dark fun. Light-up tats! Forehead advertisements! Turn signals for your ears! Runway lights! And for the ultra-tacky, remember those tee-shirts with the blinky EQs?

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[quote=“Jorpho, post:2, topic:81567, full:true”]Methinks it’s only particularly crazy when people start saying things like

I’d become one step closer to being a cyborg.

Thanks to a warranty recall, my mother is now on her third artificial hip.

She gets quite irritated when I refer to her as “Cybermum”. :slight_smile:


I’m fairly close to NUFC. Do I get five quid?

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I suspect in five years time we’ll all be getting them. Doesn’t sound like there’s a killer app yet.

I’d prefer alternate sensory systems personally - humans have quite good sensation in all the areas that count (yes, even that way), but new ways to sense things would be a new experience. Having said that, while sensing magnetic fields with finger magnets sounds cool, I literally haven’t heard of a true success story with them (that didn’t end in tears) and that’s not even factoring in longer term effects. I’ll wait for actual medical grade enhancements.

As for the article itself…

It’s a tiny chip about the size and shape of a grain of rice capable of storing a small amount of data (880 bytes)

That really doesn’t sound like enough to do anything useful; sure you could use it as a unique identifier, but because it’s universally and completely read writeable you couldn’t use it for authentication and I can’t think of any other use that wouldn’t work at least as well without implanting.

What about other non- medically necessary enhancements, like IUDs?

Well, IUDs might not be necessary, but unlike NFC tags they can’t function without being implanted, and have tangible benefits in modifying the way the recipient’s body functions. NFC tags just save you from having to remember a glove or sticker or whatever external carrier you would use. And IUDs are regulated, and implanted by proceduralists in a clean environment.

The thing doesn’t have the inherent capability to monitor my physical location.

It doesn’t need it. The whole point of NFC tags is to act as unique identifiers, if someone sees your NFC tag somewhere they know where you’ve been. And given that range issue (over a dozen feet with an appropriate reader) you can bet that if these become reasonably common or a particular person with one becomes targetted by someone that those readers will start turning up hidden away where you’d never notice them. Not to mention a potential near future of advertisers and Google-esque tracking organisations having yet another source of location data.

Personally, if I were getting one of these I’d want it to at the very least function like an OpenPGP card, and only transmit when receiving an authentication token from an authorized reader using PKI.


I dunno. I want to like this.
But I just end up not understanding. If I go to adafruit, they’ve got piles of nfc bobbles- rings, cards, stickers, tags… Most of which have more storage, all of which cost less and carry no risk of infection or rejection. Maybe I’m a wuss?

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I thought about putting my dog’s contact info on there so that in case I got lost I could be returned to him.




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You may also want to know that the implant may or may not interfere with your ability to use chopsticks effectively and will likely permanently impact how you use your hands, since you now are very aware that you have new pinch points.

I got mine done by Amal Graafstra at toorcamp, rfid on the left and NFC on the right. I’m still learning to use chopsticks without it rubbing against the implant, sometimes I need to hold them with my left hand to avoid pain, or at least discomfort.