First USA company to install rice-sized microchips in employees

Three Square Market

Published on Jul 24, 2017

Three Square Market, a vending machine business, says the microchip would be implanted in the skin between a person’s thumb and forefinger. The chips are roughly the same size as a single grain of rice.

Welcome to the future?

A Wisconsin technology company is offering its employees microchip implants that can be used to scan into the building and purchase food at work. Whether or not to get a chip is up to the employee to decide. This is the first US company to offer this service to their employees.

Three Square Market, a company that provides technology for break-room or micro markets, has over 50 employees who plan to have the devices implanted. The tiny chip, which uses RFID technology or Radio-Frequency Identification, can be implanted between the thumb and forefinger “within seconds,” according to a statement from the company.

The Circle movie posterIt sounds like something from the movie, The Circle starring Tom Hanks and Emma Watson . Being part machine does not hurt much, Tony Danna, vice president of international development at the company assured us.

“It stings you when it goes in. It takes about two seconds to go in,” Danna said. You may think it is weird, but according to Danna, it’s not weird, it’s “advanced.”

Bio-hackers have been inserting radio-frequency identification chips into their hands for a few years now, but this is the first time a company has offered it as a perk to employees. The $300 chips are inserted, and importantly, if an employee wants, removed, for free at the Wisconsin-based high tech vending machine company. Just like any credit card or ID card chip, the implant allows employees to pay for their lunch or open the door to their office. The only difference is that they can now do it with a wave of their hand. Out of 85 employees at the company, 50 have agreed to have the chip implanted, including, of course, Danna. Three Square Market has a particular interest in RFID technology because its vending machines can be operated using it.

“I don’t want to carry a wallet with me anymore. Actually, I forgot my wallet today. I didn’t even bring it to work. It’d be nice to be able to get some lunch. But you got your wallet, you got your key, your company badge. Now forget about all of that. That’s all in that implant in your hand,” Danna said.

Another perk of the RFID chip? No need to remember your computer passwords.

“Forget about all the passwords that you try and remember. Now your RFID chips are going to be able to do that work for you,” Danna said.

In case you are worried that companies will start to use the RFID chips to track the whereabouts of employees, the chip used by Three Square Market has no GPS component. Instead, it is a progression from the credit card chips and iPhone pay functions we already use, simply carried under your skin instead of in your wallet or pocket.

But that does not mean that future versions of RFID chips at companies can’t have a tracking component. Speaking with NBC News, Duke computer science professor Vincent Conitzer took a more cautious approach to the technology and its future utilization.

“If most employees agree, it may become a workplace expectation. Then, the next iteration of the technology allows some additional tracking functionality. And so it goes until employees are expected to implant something that allows them to be constantly monitored, even outside of work,” Conitzer said. “And unlike with a card, phone or ring, the employee cannot easily and selectively remove the device. Now is the right time to have a robust societal conversation about what we would like to see happen, rather than just seeing where things go and then realizing we can’t go back.”

How those societal conversations play out remains to be seen. But if having a RFID chip inserted under your skin still brings to mind paranoid science fiction or your dog’s microchip, you may have to get over your fears soon. According to Danna, “The amount of phone calls we’ve received from companies that are interested in also offering it to their employees has been, it’s been overwhelming, it’s been really cool.”

The company, which is based in River Falls, Wisc., envisions the rice-sized micro chip allowing employees to easily pay for items, access the building and their computers all with a scan of their hand.

“We foresee the use of RFID technology to drive everything from making purchases in our office break room market, opening doors, use of copy machines, logging into our office computers, unlocking phones, sharing business cards, storing medical/health information, and used as payment at other RFID terminals,” CEO Todd Westby said in a company statement. “Eventually, this technology will become standardized allowing you to use this as your passport, public transit, all purchasing opportunities, etc.”

And while microchipping employees may sound like something out of a horror film, the company is partnering with Swedish company BioHax International, which already has many “chipped” employees.

Employees are not required to get the microchips, and Westby told the station there is no GPS tracking.

Ataribox – Two Retro Versions will be avaialble

Atari’s new console looks retro and nostalgic.

Just over a month since its announcement at E3, Atari is offering a proper look at its first new console in 20-plus years. In an email to fans, the company revealed that the Ataribox will come in two editions, both of which combine a recognizably retro aesthetic with contemporary design flourishes.

Gallery: Ataribox console | 4 Photos

 

As revealed in this teaser video, one version of the Ataribox draws its design cues from the brown wood found on the original Atari 2600. The other edition comes in red and black with a glass front panel. Both will feature ribbed lines that flow around the console’s body and a raised back. A front-facing logo and four indicator lights complete the design. On the back you’ll find an HDMI port, four USB sockets, and an SD card reader.

Although the company is keeping tight-lipped about the console’s specs, it sounds like it will be more than just a NES Classic for the Atari set. The latest info has it that the Ataribox will boast a mix of classic and contemporary titles. Then again, it could do a lot worse than aping Nintendo’s money-raking nostalgia cash-ins.

There’s still no word on pricing, release dates or games — things that might help drum up hype for the new hardware. Atari has a decent library of titles, too, stretching from arcade classic Centipede to this year’s Rollercoaster Tycoon Touch. The company has also been tight-lipped on who, if anyone, it will work with in the wider development community.

Atari believes that keeping quiet is the best policy for now, however, saying that it wants to nail its first console in two decades. “We know you are hungry for more,” the company sent in an email sent to customers. “We’re not teasing you intentionally; we want to get this right, so we’ve opted to share things step by step.” Atari fans are definitely a patient bunch, that’s for sure.

Zip Bomb Education 101

Zip Bomb

Chrome Crash

Webmasters can use so-called ZIP bombs to crash a hacker’s vulnerability and port scanner and prevent him from gaining access to their website.

The term “ZIP bomb” refers to nested ZIP archives that when unzipped are decompressed to huge files that the victim’s computer cannot process in its memory or cannot store on disk.

For example, a 4.5 petabyte file containing only zeroes can be easily compressed to 42 kilobytes because the ZIP compression system can handle repetitive data extremely well.

ZIP bombs used in the past to crash antiviruses.

ZIP bombs have been used in the past decades as a way to crash antivirus software, which is configured to scan ZIP files by decompressing the file and looking at its content.

While antivirus clients have gained protection against ZIP bombs, other software has not, such as web browsers or vulnerability scanners like Nikto, SQLMap, or others.

Austrian tech expert Christian Haschek has put together two PHP scripts that will scan for particular user-agent strings and deliver ZIP bombs to vulnerability scanners or web browsers trying to access secure or private web pages (such as admin panels, backends, or pages with login forms).

These scripts will replace the normal page hackers would expect to find with a ZIP bomb. Once their clients receive the ZIP bomb, they’ll try to process the data and crash the attacker’s software.

Most browsers and scanners will crash
Here’s a list put together by Haschek that details how some clients will behave when encountering a ZIP bomb.

Client Results

  • IE 11 Memory rises, IE crashes
  • Chrome Memory rises, error shown
  • Edge Memory rises, then dips and
  • loads forever
  • Nikto Seems to scan fine but no output is reported
  • SQLmap High memory usage until crash
  • Safari Hight memory usage then crashes and reloads, then memory rises again, etc..
  • Chrome (Android) Memory rises, error shown

 


 

The two sample PHP files needed to set up a ZIP bomb for vulnerability scanners are available on Haschek’s blog. FL Computer Tech’s Copy of a 4.5 Petabyte file can be downloaded here. The password is:42. A word of caution, this file is for testing and lab purposes only. You assume the risk if it locks up your computer. Here is an Infographic on what a Petabyte is in terms of data storage size. It is quite impressive.

 

What is even more impressive is that a file 4.5 Petabytes in size (see Infographic to the left) can be stored or “compressed” into a zip file on 41.8 KB in size. Using this principle it is likely that by placing Zip Bombs in a “Honey Pot” on corporate servers and web servers would yield favorable results. On the opposite side of the spectrum is a Zip Bomb were to be included or added to a compressed file in either .zip or .rar format from a popular torrent website or P2P file sharing website, it could theoretically cause some serious issues. This would only wreak possible havoc and perhaps frustration but since it would not be profitable it probably wouldn’t occur unless this applied theory was magnified greatly in which it could be used in some form of a Cyber Attack although these as only speculations.

 

So, there you have it! In comparison, I would say it’s like taking New York City and fitting it into your carry-on luggage. If you got to the hotel and decided to unpack your luggage and New York City came spilling out into your room, you see how that might pose an issue right? Think micro-miny into monstrous monstrosity!

Don’t forget to follow-us @FLComputertech!

 

8 Ways Technology Is Improving Your Health

8 Ways Technology Is Improving Your Health
Click here for the full article on Positive Health Wellness’s Website 

BY

 

We hear all the time about how technology is bad for us. Since the introduction of computers. Even people working on App Development have the same issues, we spend more time sitting at a desk than moving around at work. We have created this sedentary lifestyle that is causing havoc in our overall life.

What if I were to tell you that technology has produced benefits? Would you believe me if I said that technology is good for your health?

Most of you wouldn’t look at first. Well, you may be able to think of a couple of ways that the computer has helped, but you are still stuck on all the negatives that ‘experts’ have shared in the past. The problem with the ‘experts’ is that they are only focused on the negatives. They haven’t looked at so many of the benefits.

So, that’s what we’ll do today. We’ll consider all the ways that technology improves our health. We’ll discuss just how it has boosted results in certain areas of healthcare and what it does for us daily.

Technology Is Everywhere in Medicine

Before we do move onto all the benefits, it’s worth discussing just how technology is used. It is found everywhere in medicine. Think about the x-ray machines, MRI scanners, and even the research equipment used daily.

There are people using it every day of the week to find cures to ailments, discover why diseases spread and creating ways to prevent the diseases. There are individuals performing tasks far more accurately than they ever did before, with keyhole surgery now a popular option for some of the most routine medical needs.

And the technology isn’t just in the hospital. It’s used in your own doctor’s office and even at home. It’s used to prolong life and create a better quality of life for those on around the clock care.

The improvements don’t just lead to better physical health. They support better mental health, which in turn improves the physical health. Technology improves connections and relationships, offering support to everyone.

We can’t get rid of technology. If we did, we would suffer greatly. Here are just eight ways that technology is improving our health and our lives.

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