Cell Phone Sensors Would Detect Bio Threats and Attacks
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is researching the use of cell phones equipped with sensors that could detect biological agents such as anthrax, as well as radioactive isotopes and toxic chemicals. Since fixed sensors can’t be placed everywhere, the solution could soon be in everyone’s hands.
Gentag, a Washington, DC-based company, is working with the government on a patented technology that modifies a cell phone to serve as a low-cost radiation and/or chemical sensor to discover external threats. The technology incorporates both modular (removable) sensor modules and built-in sensors.
The DHS program, called Cell-All, would link cell phones equipped with the detection sensors via the Global Positioning System (GPS). If a detector sensed a threat, the GPS would transmit the location and time to local emergency responders and the DHS operations center. According to the DHS, if the program works, it could be a “game-changer” in how the nation detects and responds to a deadly attack.
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