Cut the tags off when shopping at Wal-Mart. Or better, don’t shop there.

By Luis R. Miranda
The Real Agenda
July 27, 2010

The Radio Frequency Identification technology, just as many other ones used by large corporations (face reading and license plate reading technologies, etc), seems to have no limits in its applications.  RFID is, however, the one that takes all the trophies when it comes to invading privacy.  It is used in credit and debit cards, identification documents such as passports and driver’s licenses, supermarket items and now, Wal-Mart items.  Wal-Mart is the first big chain of stores to explicitly announce the use of RFID to track its merchandise, but there are a host of other companies that adopted it without warning to the public.

Of course, Wal-Mart has a “good reason” to excuse the use of this technology: Convenience.  This is the favorite reason corporations provide the public when trying to introduce unpopular practices in a way their violations are disguised.  The retailing giant will begin adding RFID tags to clothing items, specifically men’s clothing, on Aug. 1 to “gain more control of its inventory.”  The new policy will also include other items such as underwear and socks.

Now, this does not mean Wal-Mart will use the tags to know what brand you prefer or how you spend your money.  They already know that.  Wal-Mart keeps all customer information stored in a gigantic database.  The news about this tags aren’t even themselves.  The news is there is another corporations “selling” people convenience as a distraction to slowly but surely domesticate consumers into accepting RFID technology in their daily lives so that when the new National ID cards come along, everyone will see it as a convenience, too.

Make no mistake.  This may be a convenient tool for Wal-Mart to keep tabs on its stock, but for the rest of us consumers, it isn’t anything more than an indirect -or very direct- attack on our privacy.  So cut the tag as soon as you purchase anything at Wal-Mart.  Or better, don’t shop anything there if you can afford it.  Given the fact Wal-Mart is not unique to the United States -it owns supermarket chains around the world- the potential and real reach this policy will have is as large as the number of customers Wal-Mart attracts.

Do not be fooled by Walmart’s statement that they intend to use RFID on other items but only at a later time.  As everything else is made public by big corporations, it is likely Wal-Mart has been using this technology for a while, and it is only now they decide to tell people about it.  “There are so many significant benefits in knowing how to better manage inventory and better serve customers,”  “This will enhance the shopping experience and help us grow our business, ” says Wal-Mart’s spokesperson, Lorenzo López.  If you take into consideration that Wal-Mart owned stores extend from the United States, through Mexico and into Latin America, it is easy to imagine that the use of this new tags are profit oriented.  It does not matter if in the process Wal-Mart violates your privacy.  The giant will not rest until the $400 billion in its latest fiscal year are doubled and its 4,000 stores become the only ones where people can buy their clothes and food.  The fact many thousands of suppliers depend or do business with Wal-Mart, only means the suppliers themselves will eventually and sooner rather than later adopt RFID technology as well.

“This is a first piece of a very large and very frightening tracking system,” said Katherine Albrecht, director of a group called Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering.  Ms. Albrecht concern is that of many conscious consumers who see this kind of technology as a privacy hog that invades their lives more and more everyday.  One of her main issues comes with the possibility that shoppers who enter Wal-Mart stores will be tracked by this technology through their driver’s licenses -that already contain RFID chips in them- by Wal-Mart workers with their RFID guns, or through pre-installed readers located around the stores.  Nowadays, there are RFID tracking devices anyone can buy on the Internet that can easily read licenses, passports, credit cards and any other document with RFID chips in them, which makes it very likely a corporation like Wal-Mart has those available.

Nonetheless, Wal-Mart spokespeople know shoppers are aware of this and believe they are taking a “thoughtful and methodical approach.” to their concerns.  Dan Fogelman, another Wal-Mart spokesman says the label does not collect consumer information.  “Wal-Mart is using it strictly to manage inventory. The customer is in complete control,” he added.  The retailer will accompany their new technology with what they call a customer “education program” through videos presented in the stores and sign placed around the stores’ corridors around the world.  Wal-Mart operates as Walmart in the United States, Asda in the United Kingdom, Walmex in Mexico, Seiyu in Japan, Best Price in India and it has wholly operations in Argentina and Brazil.  In 2004, Wal-Mart bought the 116 stores from the supermarket chain Bompreço in northeast Brazil. In 2005, it swallowed Brazilian Sonae Distribution Group through its subsidiary WMS Supermercados do Brasil, and with this controlling the brands Nacional and Mercadorama, the leaders in the state of Rio Grande do Sul and Paraná. After acquiring Bompreço and Sonae, Wal-Mart became the third largest supermarket chain in Brazil, behind Carrefour and Pão de Açúcar.

For a list of Wal-Mart’s brands click here.

Related Article: Supermarket Giants Crush Central American Farmers

Big Pharma Pills will have Nano devices to track patients

Natural News

The emerging field of nanotechnology is currently gaining a lot of attention across many industries. Nanotechnology allows scientists to manipulate individual atoms and molecules to create unique materials and even micro-scale devices, and this is leading to a wide range of applications in clothing, textiles, electronics and even food and medicine.

Sounds great, right? Except for the fact that, like genetic modification of food crops, nanotechnology tampers with Mother Nature in a way that’s largely untested for safety. And here’s something really bizarre: The pharmaceutical industry may soon begin using nanotechnology to encode drug tablets and capsules with brand and tracking data that you swallow as part of the pill.

To really explain how this works, let me simplify how nanotechnology works so you’ll see why this is so bizarre (and potentially dangerous). Instead of using materials and elements as they’re found in nature to build and construct things, nanotechnologists are deconstructing the basic building blocks of these materials and elements to make completely new ones. In other words, nanoscientists are reconstructing the molecular building blocks of our world without yet knowing what it will do to humans and to the environment.

The long-term consequences of nanotechnology are still largely unknown because not a single formidable study has ever been conducted on this emerging science that proves it to be safe. In fact, most of the studies that have been conducted on nanotechnology show that it’s actually detrimental to health and to the environment (which I’ll cover further, below).

But that hasn’t stopped Big Pharma from potentially adopting it for use in a new tracking and identification system that could be integrated into the very drug pills and capsules that millions of people swallow every day.

By the way, I’ve also posted a video explaining all this. Check it out here: http://naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=93626…

Nano-encrypted bar code in every dose

Now don’t get me wrong. Big Pharma isn’t the only industry using nanotechnology despite a complete lack of safety evidence. “Nanoparticles” are present in sunscreens, fabric protectors, plastic food liners, and other products. But what’s different about the nanoparticles soon to be found in a pill near you is that they are capable of storing data about where the drug was made, when it was made, and where it has traveled.

It’s a lot like the bar codes used on parcels to track them along their shipping journeys, except that in the drugs, it’s a molecular bar code that people will be swallowing. During digestion of the pill, the nano data bits will be distributed throughout your body and can become lodged in your body’s tissues.

A company that’s introducing this system for pharmaceuticals, says it this way on its website:

“In the NanoEncryption process, NanoCodes are incorporated directly onto tablets, capsules and vial caps. These codes may be associated with an unlimited amount of manufacturer-determined data, including product information (strength and expiration date), manufacturing information (location date, batch and lot number) and distribution information (country, distributor, wholesaler and chain).”

So if you take these drugs, you’ll be swallowing nano “hard drives” that can store data — data that will be distributed throughout your body and can be read by medical technicians who could then track what drugs you took in the past. And what’s the rationale for this? According to the company, it’s to “defen[d] against pharmaceutical counterfeiting and illegal diversion”.

It sounds like a good idea, right? Unfortunately, there’s a whole lot more to this technology than meets the eye.

Editor’s Note: UPDATE 1 — The company originally mentioned in this story now denies what NaturalNews reported. Their own website text as quoted in this story, was apparently misleading, and they now claim they do not use nano “material” of any kind to achieve their nano encoding. We are temporarily removing the name of this company from this story while we attempts to sort out the truth of the matter. In the past, we’ve had many company rush to change their own website text after we ran a story on them. All quotes published in this story were 100% accurate at the time of publication, and we made a good faith attempt to report this story accurately.