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10 July 2017

Opal card hacker outsmarts NSW Government

Meow-Ludo Meow-Meow has an Opal card chip inserted into his hand. Picture: ABC News

A SYDNEY man who implanted a public transport card into his hand has performed the ultimate troll on authorities upset by the actions of the biohacker.

After hearing Meow-Ludo Meow-Meow had the chip of an Opal contactless transport card implanted under the skin on his left hand, Transport for NSW attempted to cancel the account because it was a violation of the card’s terms of use.

“[Transport for NSW] does not support the tampering or damaging of Opal cards, which would be a breach of the terms of use,” the government department said.

“Changing the physical attributes of the card may impact the reliability of the Opal card.”

When Transport for NSW cancelled an Opal card belonging to Meow-Meow, it believed the war was won.

Meow-Meow did not register the Opal card chip inserted into his hand. Picture: ABC News

Meow-Meow did not register the Opal card chip inserted into his hand. Picture: ABC NewsSource:ABC

Only, the game of cat-and-mouse was just starting thanks to the biohacker’s incredible foresight to not register the Opal chip located under his skin.

“The second they heard what I was doing, they cancelled my card — and they would have done it to the one in my hand if [it was registered],” he told Business Insider.

While it is not illegal to have an unregistered account, it means the card will need to be topped up with value at vending machines. An unregistered card also means it cannot be returned or cancelled if lost or stolen.

Transport for NSW claim the chip is a violation of the card’s terms of use.

Transport for NSW claim the chip is a violation of the card’s terms of use.Source:ABC

Meow-Meow said he will snub the concerns of authorities and leave the chip in his hand for a year.

“I’ve had legal advice today that they can’t forcibly restrain my hand,” he said.

“The whole thing is just ridiculous. I am surprised it’s had this much response. I have bodily sovereignty — I can put stuff in my body if I want.”

The biohacker believes Transport for NSW should be exploring the concept instead of trying to shut it down.

“I understand it’s controversial. I don’t think it would be adopted widescale immediately but if it did [eventually] I wouldn’t be disappointed,” he said.

“I think it represents some exciting opportunities for start-ups to think about.”

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