New ID cards are supposed to be ‘unforgeable’ – but it took our expert 12 minutes to clone one, and programme it with false data

Steve Boggan writes in the Daily Mail about Adam Laurie’s demonstration that the RFID chips the Home Office plans to use in ID cards can be cloned:

But as I watch, Laurie picks up a mobile phone and, using just the handset and a laptop computer, electronically copies the ID card microchip and all its information in a matter of minutes.

He then creates a cloned card, and with a little help from another technology expert, he changes all the information the card contains – the physical details of the bearer, name, fingerprints and so on. And he doesn’t stop there.

With a few more keystrokes on his computer, Laurie changes the cloned card so that whereas the original card holder was not entitled to benefits, the cloned chip now reads ‘Entitled to benefits’.

As a chilling twist, he adds a message that would be visible to any police officer or security official who scanned the card: ‘I am a terrorist – shoot on sight.’

And all of this has been done in such a way as to fool the electronic readers intended to check the ID card’s authenticity. It is, quite simply, a terrifying achievement.

One thought on “New ID cards are supposed to be ‘unforgeable’ – but it took our expert 12 minutes to clone one, and programme it with false data

  1. Pete says:

    The details are ON the card?

    I thought they would simply contain a long unique ID which was looked up from a central database so data is in a “set”.

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