The Internet of Bodies

https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RR3226.html

Abstract

This Article introduces the ongoing progression of the Internet of Things (IoT) into the Internet of Bodies (IoB)—a network of human bodies whose integrity and functionality rely at least in part on the Internet and related technologies, such as artificial intelligence. IoB devices will evidence the same categories of legacy security flaws that have plagued IoT devices. However, unlike most IoT, IoB technologies will directly, physically harm human bodies—a set of harms courts, legislators, and regulators will deem worthy of legal redress. As such, IoB will herald the arrival of (some forms of) corporate software liability and a new legal and policy battle over the integrity of the human body and mind. Framing this integrity battle in light of current regulatory approaches, this Article offers a set of specific innovation-sensitive proposals to bolster corporate conduct safeguards through regulatory agency action, contract, tort, intellectual property, and secured transactions and bankruptcy.

Yet, the challenges of IoB are not purely legal in nature. The social integration of IoB will also not be seamless. As bits and bodies meld and as human flesh becomes permanently entwined with hardware, software, and algorithms, IoB will test our norms and values as a society. In particular, it will challenge notions of human autonomy and self-governance. Legal scholars have traditionally considered Kantian autonomy as the paradigmatic lens for legal determinations impacting the human body. However, IoB threatens to undermine a fundamental precondition of Kantian autonomy—Kantian heautonomy. Damaged heautonomy renders both Kantian autonomy and deliberative democracy potentially compromised. As such, this Article argues that safeguarding heautonomy should constitute the animating legal principle for governance of IoB bodies. The Article concludes by introducing the companion essay to this Article, The Internet of Latour’s Things. This companion essay inspired by the work of Bruno Latour offers a sliding scale of “technohumanity” as a framework for the legal and policy discussion of what it means to be “human” in an age where bodies are the “things” connected to the Internet.

 

What Is The Internet Of Bodies? And How Is It Changing Our World?

Bernard Marr Contributor  –  Dec 6, 2019

Have you heard the term the Internet of Bodies (IoB)? That may conjure up a few thoughts that have nothing to do with the true nature of the term, but it’s about using the human body as the latest data platform. At first, this concept seems quite creepy, but then when you realize the possibilities it creates, it becomes quite exciting. Here we explore what the Internet of Bodies is, some examples in use today, and a few of the challenges it presents.

What is the Internet of Bodies (IoB)?

When the Internet of Things (IoT) connects with your body, the result is the Internet of Bodies (IoB). The Internet of Bodies (IoB) is an extension of the IoT and basically connects the human body to a network through devices that are ingested, implanted, or connected to the body in some way. Once connected, data can be exchanged, and the body and device can be remotely monitored and controlled.

There are three generations of Internet of Bodies that include:

·        Body external: These are wearable devices such as Apple Watches or Fitbits that can monitor our health.

·        Body internal: These include pacemakers, cochlear implants, and digital pills that go inside our bodies to monitor or control various aspects of our health.

·        Body embedded: The third generation of the Internet of Bodies is embedded technology where technology and the human body are melded together and have a real-time connection to a remote machine.

Progress in wireless connectivity, materials, and tech innovation is allowing implantable medical devices (IMD) to scale and be viable in many applications.

Examples of Internet of Bodies Devices in Use or Development

The most recognized example of Internet of Bodies is a defibrillator or pacemaker, a small device placed in the abdomen or chest to help patients with heart conditions control abnormal heart rhythms with electrical impulses. In 2013, former United States Vice President Dick Cheney got his WiFi-connected defibrillator replaced with one without WiFi capacity. It was feared that he could be assassinated by electric shock if a rogue agent hacked the device.

A “smart pill” is another IoB device. These pills have edible electronic sensors and computer chips in them. Once swallowed, these digital pills can collect data from our organs and then send it to a remote device connected to the internet. The firstdigital chemotherapy pill is now in use that combines chemotherapy drugs with a sensor that captures, records, and shares information with healthcare providers (with the patient’s consent) regarding the drug dosage and time, plus other data on rest and activity, heart rate and more.

Smart contact lenses” are being developed that integrate sensors and chips that can monitor health diagnostics based on information from the eye and eye fluid. One smart contact lens in development aims to monitor glucose levels that will hopefully allow diabetics to monitor their glucose levels without repeated pinpricks throughout the day.

Taking it up a notch is the Brain Computer Interface (BCI), where a person’s brain is actually merged with an external device for monitoring and controlling in real-time. The ultimate goal is to help restore function to individuals with disabilities by using brain signals rather than conventional neuromuscular pathways.

But not all Internet of Bodies use cases are for healthcare reasons. Bioengineering company, Biohax has embedded chips in more than 4,000 people primarily for convenience. In one widely reported example, 50 employees of Three Square Market agreed to have an RFID microchip the size of a large grain of rice (similar to what’s embedded in pets to be able to identify and locate them when they are lost) implanted. This chip allows these employees to gain access to the building without a key, pay for items with a wave of their hand at the vending machine by deducting the amount immediately from their account rather than use money and log onto their computers.

Challenges Faced by Internet of Bodies Technology

The situation of U.S. Vice President Cheney getting a defibrillator not connected to WiFi for security reasons illustrates one of the biggest challenges faced by Internet of Bodies technology—how to secure the devices and information they collect and transmit. Nearly half a million pacemakers were recalled in 2017 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration over security issues requiring a firmware update. The security challenges faced by Internet of Bodies tech are similar to what plagues Internet of Things generally, but there can be life and death consequences when IoB devices are involved. Additionally, IoB devices create another cyber security challenge that will need to be safeguarded from hackers.

Privacy is also of paramount concern. Questions about who can access the data and for what purpose need answers. For example, a device that monitors health diagnostics could also track unhealthy behaviors. Will health insurance companies be able to deny coverage when a customer’s IoB device reports their behavior? A cochlear implant could restore hearing, but it might also record all audio in a person’s environment. Will that data remain private?

As Internet of Bodies tech continues to grow, regulatory and legal issues will have to be resolved and policies built around the proper use of the technology.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2019/12/06/what-is-the-internet-of-bodies-and-how-is-it-changing-our-world/?sh=55f70aea68b7

 


 

World Economic Forum :

Shaping the Future of the Internet of Bodies :

New Challenges of Technology Governance – July 2020

http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_IoB_briefing_paper_2020.pdf

 

Part One: The internet of bodies is here

1.1 Range and categories of technologies

1.2 Data-enabled social benefits

1.3 Risks associated with the internet of bodies

Part Two: Governance of internet of bodies data

2.1 Data regulatory landscape in the US and EU

2.2 New governance challenges in the age of big data

2.3 Envisioning possibilities and options

 


 

The Internet of Bodies

Opportunities, Risks, and Governance by Mary Lee, Benjamin Boudreaux, Ritika Chaturvedi, Sasha Romanosky, Bryce Downing

https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RR3226.html

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