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BlogsAsk The Experts ForumDoes Human Touch Damage Transponders?

Does Human Touch Damage Transponders?

Posted By RFID Journal, 02.20.2015

Is it true that physical contact can damage passive tags and render them unreadable?

—Name withheld

———

One way to render a passive RFID transponder unusable is to overload the circuits within the chip. This is analogous to blowing a fuse by overloading the electrical circuits in your home. Human beings are capable of building up a charge of electricity and then discharging it upon coming into contact with a metallic object (sometimes, you get a shock when you touch a doorknob, for instance). If there is a large enough discharge when you touch a transponder's microchip, it could blow a circuit and render the tag inoperable. This is a rare occurrence, because the chip is usually insulated by a paper label, a plastic inlay or some other packaging.

—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal

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