Wisconsin company to implant microchips in its employees

July 25, 2017
RFID chip embedded in the hands of workers at 32M will allow them to open doors, make purchases

Last week, Three Square Market (32M), a Wisconsin-based company that provides technology for micro markets, also known as break room markets, announced that it is offering implantable RFID chip technology to its employees, enabling them to easily make purchases in their own break room, open doors and log in to their computers with a simple hand scan.

In a statement, the company said that program is optional; however, they expect over 50 of their staff members to be voluntarily chipped.

The chip, which leverages near field communications (NFC) similar to today’s mobile-based access control solutions, is about the size of a grain of rice and will be implanted between the thumb and forefinger underneath the skin.

 “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.  Eventually, this technology will become standardized allowing you to use this as your passport, public transit, all purchasing opportunities, etc.” said 32M CEO Todd Westby.

Westby said that implantable chip technology is the “next evolution” in payment systems and that it is important for the company to continue to lead the way in such advancements.  

“The international market place is wide-open and we believe that the future trajectory of total market share is going to be driven by who captures this arena first,” said 32M COO Patrick McMullan.  “Europe is far more advanced in mobile and chip technology usage than the U.S. and we are thrilled with the growth opportunity this enhancement will bring to us.”

The company also believes the technology will help it grow its other self-checkout businesses.  “We see this as another payment and identification option that not only can be used in our markets but our other self-checkout / self-service applications that we are now deploying which include convenience stores and fitness centers,” added McMullan.

Employees will be chipped at the 32M inaugural “chip party” hosted at their headquarters in River Falls, Wis., on August 1, 2017.