This week (June/13/2007) I attended the RFID Training course offered at the Behrend campus of Penn State in Erie PA. The training is great "hands on" preparation for the CompTIA RFID+ Certification, which I'm going to be setting for later this summer.
There was a lot of tips and real world examples, that you can simply not get out of a book.
When the the initial RFID section was written several years ago, there was no RFID standard. Today EPCGlobal is setting the standards.
Gaithersburg, MD -- Retailers, manufacturers, hospitals, federal agencies and other organizations planning to use radio frequency identification (RFID) technology to improve their operations should also systematically evaluate the possible security and privacy risks and use best practices to mitigate them, according to a new report from the Department of Commerce's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
"RFID tags, commonly referred to as smart tags, have the ability to improve logistics, profoundly change cost structures for business, and improve the current levels of safety and authenticity of the international pharmaceutical supply chain and many other industries," said Under Secretary of Commerce for Technology Robert C. Cresanti. "This important report lays the foundation for addressing potential RFID security risks so that a thoughtful enterprise can launch a smart tag program with confidence."
RFID devices send and/or receive radio signals to transmit identifying information such as product model or serial numbers. They come in a wide variety of types and sizes, from the size of a grain of rice or printed on paper to much larger devices with built in batteries. Unlike bar coding systems, RFID devices can communicate without requiring a line of sight and over longer distances for faster batch processing of inventory and can be outfitted with sensors to collect data on temperature changes, sudden shocks, humidity or other factors affecting products.
As RFID devices are deployed in more sophisticated applications from matching hospital patients with laboratory test results to tracking systems for dangerous materials, concerns have been raised about protecting such systems against eavesdropping and unauthorized uses.
"The goal of our report," according to lead author Tom Karygiannis of NIST, "is to give organizations practical ways in a structured format with checklists and specific recommendations to address potential RFID security risks."
NIST prepared the new report as part of its responsibilities under the Federal Information and Security Management Act of 2002 to help federal agencies provide adequate security for their information technology systems. However, its recommendations for selecting appropriate security controls for RFID systems are likely to be useful to other types of organizations as well.
Two case studies -- in health care and supply chain settings -- provide examples for identifying and minimizing security risks throughout the various stages of an RFID project.
Source: NIST News Release.
"The ZL70101 is a high performance half duplex RF communications link for medical implantable applications.
The system is very flexible and supports several low power wakeup options. Extremely low power is achievable using the 2.45 GHz ISM Band Wakeup-receiver option. The high level of integration includes a Media Access Controller, providing complete control of the device along with coding and decoding of RF messages. A standard SPI interface provides for easy access by the application."
Typical Applications: Body area network, short range device applications using the 433 MHz ISM band.
Source: ZARLINK Semiconductor.
Source: Sensors Magazine.