DHS interested in your future cell phone

Posted By on June 13, 2007

Cell phone detectorImagine every cell phone in the United States with built in environmental threat detectors (radiation, chemical, etc) combined with GPS and the ability to send this data to the US Department of Homeland Security. According to the two companies (Gentag, Inc. and eV PRODUCTS) working on this technology, cell phone-detector system could save millions of lives by identifying major threats very quickly, even before they occur. Surprisingly, deployment of sensors is already taking place in many areas besides PDA and cell phones, and the plan to include individual cell phones will close the loop.

Dr. John Peeters, founder of Gentag, claims that his companies “patented technology provides the components to address the US Department of Homeland Security’s recently announced vision of creating a low- cost, nationwide, wireless, sensor-network blanket based on cell phones.”

Rick Smith at eV PRODUCTS states that “Our line of miniature, mobile sensors is enabling the mass deployment of ubiquitous, smart, radiation-sensor systems in devices like cell phones.”

Gentag, Inc. is a technology-development company focusing on innovative, low-cost, wireless sensor technologies. The company owns unique intellectual property relating to cell-phone sensor combinations and wireless sensor networks, including patent 7,109,859.

eV PRODUCTS, a division of II-VI Incorporated (NASDAQ: IIVI) , is a premier manufacturer and supplier of solid-state radiation sensor technologies used in security, industrial, and medical applications. eV PRODUCTS maintains the largest Cadmium Zinc Telluride (CZT) crystal growth facility in the world dedicated exclusively to enable next generation ionizing radiation sensing markets.


  • Wow! That is interesting. While I haven’t given a lot of thought about whether there might be privacy implications, having a huge redundant array of threat sensors distributed throughout the nation could be useful in getting early responses before things get out of control and save lives.

  • Scott,
    When I heard about this on CNBC yesterday I thought … “what a great idea!” Of course then came the privacy thoughts and mass hysteria that false positives could create.But just as we have done in recent years with sacrificing personal liberties for national security, I see this as one simple addition to a cell phone worth considering. I would gladly volunteer to carry a sensor if it would help detect potential threats to our citizens. Maybe just make it optional? I think the majority of cell phone subscribers would turn it on … especially if we were enticed with an “I’m an Uncle Sam Patriot” discount. (a few bucks a month off your cell phone bill?)

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.