A Tesla Owner Implanted The RFID Chip From Her Model 3’s Keycard Into Her Arm

Tesla’s Model 3 doesn’t come with a physical key. Instead, it can be unlocked and turned on with a smartphone, a car-shaped key fob, or a keycard that comes in handy if you don’t have a fob or your phone dies. One creative driver figured out a way to make sure that she can always unlock and start her Model 3: she implanted the RFID tag from the keycard into her forearm.

Amie DD is a software engineer and self-described “maker of things.” In a video, she explained that she had implanted an RFID tag in her arm years ago, which she had used to open her home’s front door and to send a smartphone’s browser to her personal website. When she preordered her Model 3, she realized that she could probably do something similar with the keycard. She didn’t have any luck transferring the software to her existing chip, so she decided to extract the card’s chip and implant that into her arm.

To do that, she dissolved the card using acetone, and had it encased in a biopolymer. From there, she went to a body-modification studio to have the chip (about the size of a Lego mini-figure) implanted into her forearm. In another video (warning, there’s some blood), she shows off the implantation. She also documented her process on Hackaday.

While she doesn’t show off the chip in action on the video (she noted on Twitter that her arm was swollen right after she had the chip implanted), she told The Verge via DM that the chip does work, although the range from her arm to the console “isn’t the greatest,” — about an inch (25 mm) — and she says that she hopes that’ll improve as the swelling goes down. At the very least, she’ll never accidentally lock herself out of her car.

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