Can a Person Carrying an RFID-Chipped Passport Be Monitored from Long Distances?

By RFID Journal

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Ask The ExpertsCan a Person Carrying an RFID-Chipped Passport Be Monitored from Long Distances?
RFID Journal Staff asked 4 years ago

If so, could this be accomplished via a satellite?

—John

———

John,

The short answer is “no.” The RFID transponders in passports are high-frequency (HF) tags, which have a read range of only about 3 feet. Moreover, the air-interface protocol standard—the rules that govern communication between a tag and a reader—require that the read range be restricted to a few inches. Most countries, including the United States, use a foil liner in the passport’s cover to prevent the tags from being read when the passport is not open. There is no way for a transponder without a battery to communicate with a satellite.

—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal

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