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Saudi files for 'killer' tracking chip patent

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Saudi files for 'killer' tracking chip patent
An illustration from the DPMA's public online archive copy of the invention.
17:13 CEST+02:00
A Saudi Arabian inventor has filed for a patent on a potentially lethal science fiction-style human tracking microchip, the German Patent and Trademark Office (DPMA) told The Local on Friday.

But the macabre innovation that enables remote killing will likely be denied copyright protection.

“While the application is still pending further paperwork on his part, the invention will probably be found to violate paragraph two of the German Patent Law – which does not allow inventions that transgress public order or good morals,” spokeswoman Stephanie Krüger told The Local from Munich.

The patent application – entitled “Implantation of electronic chips in the human body for the purposes of determining its geographical location” – was filed on October 30, 2007, but was only published last week, or 18 months after submission as required by German law, she said.

“In recent times the number of people sought by security forces has increased,” the Jeddah-based inventor wrote in his summary.

The tiny electronic device, dubbed the “Killer Chip” by Swiss daily Tagesanzeiger, would be suited for tracking fugitives from justice, terrorists, illegal immigrants, criminals, political opponents, defectors, domestic help, and Saudi Arabians who don't return home from pilgrimages.

“I apply for these reasons and for reasons of state security and the security of citizens,” the statement reads.

After subcutaneous implantation, the chip would send out encrypted radio waves that would be tracked by satellites to confirm the person's identity and whereabouts. An alternate model chip could reportedly release a poison into the carrier if he or she became a security risk.

“Foreigners are allowed to apply for patents in Germany through a native representative, in this case it was a Munich law firm,” Krüger told The Local. “Most people apply for a patent in several countries, and this inventor probably did too.”

But the law firm, DTS Munich, is no longer responsible for the application.

"We resigned from representation of this case last week," a spokesman said without stating why.

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