Total surveillance visitors World Cup Germany

By EDRi · January 26, 2005

Think twice before buying a ticket to the 2006 FIFA World Cup in
Germany. You can only apply for tickets online, and in order to obtain a
ticket you will have to answer a questionnaire demanding a lot of personal
data. This profile will be linked to a mini spy chip (RFID) on the ticket.
Rena Tangens from the German privacy-organisation FoeBuD is calling on all
fans to boycott the World Championship because “the World Cup is being
abused by sponsors and the surveillance industry to introduce
snooping-technology and to spy on the fans.”

Tickets will be sold from 1 February onwards. The questionnaire demands
date of birth, passport number, telephone and fax number, e-mail, bank or
credit-card data, as well as team and club preferences. Fans are not only
to hand over their own data but also those of others in whose name they
want to order tickets. These data will not just be used for the
application but shared with the sponsors and other countries which are
participating in the World Cup. And this procedure is not limited to the
lucky few who will actually gain entrance to the stadiums but applies to
everyone who tries to apply for one of the tickets.

FoeBuD is upset about the RFID-tag on the ticket, because the personal
data can be secretly read by hidden readers, and will reveal all the
movements of visitors. RFID-readers at the stadium cannot just be placed
at the entrance, but also at the gates to the individual blocks, at the
fan-merchandising shop and at the toilets. The spy chips are presented as
a miracle cure against terrorists, hooligans and black marketers. But
FoeBuD wonders how the chips could ever prevent brawls, scuffles, assaults
or outbursts of fury.

The soccer fan initiative BAFF (‘Buendnis aktiver Fussball Fans’) is also
taking action against this new dimension of surveillance. The DFB (German
Soccer Association) meanwhile has made some changes to the questionaire,
but remains very vague in their statements. The German Federal privacy
commissioner Peter Schaar has expressed concern about the use of the
personal ID number and has asked the Minister of the Interior for comment.

FoeBuD press release (in German, 21.01.2005)

FoeBuD press release (in English, 26.01.2005)

Press release of Active Soccer Fans

More information on RFID applications