UK Companies Are Planning To Microchip Employees For ‘Security’ Purposes
Some of the UK’s biggest companies are planning to implant their employees with microchips to “improve security” and restrict them from accessing “sensitive documents,” provoking ethical concerns over such a move.
The Swedish firm, Biohax that makes human chip implants says that it’s in talks with a number of the UK’s significant businesses from the financial and legal sectors, to implant their staff with the devices, according to the Telegraph.
Jowan Österlund, founder and CEO of Biohax as well as a former body piercer, said that his microchips, that cost £150 each, could help financial and legal companies boost security.
“These companies have sensitive documents they are dealing with. [The chips] would allow them to set restrictions for whoever,” he said.
Österlund, who claims he has lined up one prospective UK company, with “hundreds and thousands of employees,” insists that employers could offer this as an opt-in. “If you have a 15 percent uptake that is still a huge number of people that won’t require a physical ID pass.”
The idea of UK companies microchipping employees has resulted in reactions amongst union leaders and politicians, seeing it as a development that could exploit workers and call into question the ethical rights and wrongs of such a move.
The Trade Union Congress (TUC) is worried that employees could be coerced into being microchipped. As Frances O’Grady, the general secretary, pointed out: “Microchipping would give bosses even more power and control over their workers. There are obvious risks involved, and employers must not brush them aside, or pressure staff into being chipped.”
BioTeq, the UK-based firm that provides the implants to businesses and individuals, has already fitted 150 implants in the United Kingdom.
The tiny chips are implanted under the skin between the thumb and forefinger. They can enable people to open the front door of their house, access their office or start their car with a wave of their hand, and can hold medical data too.
Biohax is planning to open an office in London, UK, according to its website. It claims that 4,000 people have been microchipped, predominantly in Sweden. It’s working with Statens Järnvägar, the state-owned Swedish train firm, to permit its passengers to travel with chip implants instead of tickets.