Source: Radboud University
Passports issued nowadays have an embedded RFID chip that carries digitally signed biometric information. Access to this chip is wireless, which introduces a security risk, in that an attacker could access a person's passport without the owner knowing. While there are measures in place to prevent unauthorised access to the data in the passport, the authors show that it is easy to remotely detect the presence of a passport and determine its nationality. Although all passports implement the same international standard, experiments with passports from ten different countries show that characteristics of each implementation provide a fingerprint that is unique to passports of a particular country.