Mythbusters Host Backs Away From Comments About Shelved RFID Episode

I’m guessing that Adam Savage got a call from his corporate master boss at Discovery Channel. That’s because he’s backed away from the comments he made about that RFID hacking episode that never happened. Before I get to that, let’s hear what Texas Instruments had to say about Adam’s comments:

“In June 2007, MythBusters was interested in pursuing some great myth-busting ideas for RFID. While in pursuit, they contacted Texas Instruments’ RFID Systems, who is a pioneer of RFID and contactless technology, for technical help and understanding of RFID in the contactless payments space,” Huff said. “Some of the information that was needed to pursue the program required further support from the contactless payment companies as they construct their own proprietary systems for security to protect their customers. To move the process along, Texas Instruments coordinated a conversation with Smart Card Alliance (SCA) who invited MasterCard and Visa, on contactless payments to help MythBusters get the right information. Of the handful of people on the call, there were mostly product managers and only one contactless payment company’s legal counsel member. Technical questions were asked and answered and we were to wait for MythBusters to let us know when they were planning on showing the segment. A few weeks later, Texas Instruments was told by MythBusters that the storyline had changed and they were pursuing a different angle which did not require our help.”

Nothing sinister here. So when that statement got out, Adam came out with this statement:

“There’s been a lot of talk about this RFID thing, and I have to admit that I got some of my facts wrong, as I wasn’t on that story, and as I said on the video, I wasn’t actually in on the call,” Savage said in the statement. “Texas Instruments’ account of their call with Grant and our producer is factually correct. If I went into the detail of exactly why this story didn’t get filmed, it’s so bizarre and convoluted that no one would believe me, but suffice to say…the decision not to continue on with the RFID story was made by our production company, Beyond Productions, and had nothing to do with Discovery, or their ad sales department.”

So, it sounds like the credit card companies didn’t force this story off the air. Of course the Fox Mulder types will say that this is spin to cover up the fact that they did and they don’t want to look like scumbags people with something to hide. So to clear the air, I think it would be a good idea if Adam did go into detail about why this story didn’t get filmed. That way everything is out in the open. 

So, how about it Adam? Will you do that for your fans?

Oh, all of this still doesn’t change the fact that RFID credit cards can be hacked easily using $8 of gear bought from eBay. So no matter what, there’s still a security issue here.

One Response to “Mythbusters Host Backs Away From Comments About Shelved RFID Episode”

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