Blog: Leonie BarrieNames in the frame

Leonie Barrie | 5 October 2004

After all the furore last year when an RFID tag maker revealed that Benetton was planning to introduce smart-tags to its Sisley brand – a claim quickly denied by the Benetton camp – it seems tag makers are stirring things again. At the Frontline Expo in Chicago, a tag firm apparently told Consumer organisation Caspian (Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering) that an unnamed US retailer was planning to put RFID tracking tags on all its clothing products from 2005. 

Any idea who the retailer is? The smart money seems to be on Calvin Klein, sports clothing company Champion and youth brand Abercrombie & Fitch – all of whom had sample clothing at the show. But they’d be wise to take a leaf out of Benetton’s book. Last year’s disclosure caused a wave of concern amongst privacy advocates who were worried that the technology could lend itself to unauthorised customer monitoring. And Benetton has been trying to make up for lost ground ever since.


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