RFID Could Have Deterred Theft of 7000 Wiis from SeaTac Warehouse

December 17, 2012 Joey McFarland

RFID deters theft of electronic devices

The King County Sheriff’s office is investigating a robbery that occurred over the weekend in which thieves snagged around 7,000 Nintendo Wii gaming consoles from a SeaTac, WA warehouse.  Priced at $129.99 MSRP, the value of the stolen consoles is nearly $1 million.  That is, if the devices can operate.  New UHF RFID chips can deter such thefts by disabling the product’s functionality until it’s legally  purchased.

Monza X RFID Chips Render Stolen Electronic Devices Useless

When embedded directly into the circuit board of an electronic device, Impinj Monza X chips can link to the device’s microprocessor through a standard I2C bus.  Using a UHF reader, electronic device manufacturers can write a lock code wirelessly to the Monza X chip even while the device is powered off and inside its original retail packaging. Doing so disables the device until the point of sale.  If stolen in this state, every time someone attempts to turn on the device, its microprocessor finds the lock in the Monza X chip and will not power on. Upon a legal purchase however, the device can be unlocked by the retailer by writing its manufacturer-provided unlock code into the Monza X chip through a UHF reader. Thefts throughout the supply chain would be deterred once thieves learn the loot is worthless.

To learn more the benefits of Monza X chips for consumer electronics manufacturers, retailers and end users, watch the Bringing RFID to Electronics webinar.

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