Using an RFID implant to unlock Windows 10


I considered putting it inside my laptop and wiring it up to the usb port but I think the thing that would be iffy putting it inside something would be its ability to read the chip.

Or do as I did. Velcro it to the edge of your wired keyboard . Plug into the extra usb on keyboard and call it a day. (I know it’s not wireless lol). I do like the idea for reducing the size to a smaller usb dongle. Might try that.

You might be able to find a way to just wire it right before the bluetooth module on a wireless keyboard instead of directly to the usb port. It probably sends the same commands as a regular keyboard so there shouldnt need to be any special coding on either side.


Hmm, I’ll definitely look into this. Thanks for the idea.

Keyboard wedges are great because they work everywhere without additional drivers. The problem I have with them is, you essentially combine two input channels - keyboard and RFID reader - into one, meaning at some point you invariably end up “typing” your UID into a Word document or a chat channel.

I prefer using a separate channel for the reader, and Rohos Logon Key. It’s less ubiquitous or easy because you need a compatible reader, and you need do install stuff. But once it’s setup right, you don’t need to type anything: just scan and you log in. And it won’t type garbage in your current window if you scan when you shouldn’t.

I considered recommending this, but it’s very unlikely to work. Wireless keyboards have a microcontroller interpreting the keypresses from a grid array or a multiplexer, which is then sent to the Bluetooth module over an interface like UART or I2C. That means there’s nowhere on the board you could just splice in wires from a USB reader and have the wireless keyboard just send it along. They’re speaking a different language.


Oh yeah, here’s another thing you might want to consider if you want to use a keyboard wedge outside of the US: they all send hex values as 0-9 and A-F keypresses… as sent by a US keyboard. Meaning if you use the US keyboard layout, you get 0123456789ABCDEF. If you use a French keyboard layout, you get à&é"’(§è!çQBCDEF. If you use a Dvorak, you get 0123456789ABKE>U, etc. And it gets worse if you use several layouts depending on the language you write in, as I do.

In short keyboard wedges are only convenient if you use a keyboard layout with 0-9A-F in the same locations as a US keyboard layout.

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Given the range on these chips and their usual location is that really a common issue?

It seems to be for me. There are two cases where I get spurrious keystrokes in an open window with a keyboard wedge:

  • I’m distracted by a colleague who walks into my office. I chat with him, and when he’s about to leave, I instinctively put my hand on the reader to unlock the PC and carry on working. Only the PC hasn’t been idle long enough and hasn’t gone to the screen saver. I walk in and out of my office many times a day, and the unlocking routine has become a sort of involuntary muscle memory movement.

  • I unlock the PC normally by putting my hand on the reader. Only I didn’t put my hand exactly where I should have. Maybe a bit too much over the edge of the reader or something. The reader just about takes one reading, the PC unlocks, the reader loses contact with my chip, then immediately reaquires it and sends a string of garbage into the current window of my now-unlocked PC.

Plus, like I said, if I happen to have a non-US keyboard layout active when the PC is locked, the wedge plain doesn’t work and I have to enter my password manually, which is really annoying. Not to mention, I’m used to typing my passwords in one keyboard layout, not necessarily in all the others, so it’s even more annoying when it happens.

None of this is an issue with a reader with a dedicated interface.

Ha, fuck I didnt even consider what it might do when I have a different layout enabled

This problems seem like they would be trivial to fix with a simple AHK script.

If you want I could try and bodge soemthing together. Might not be able to fix all problems but some might. Let me know.

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I recently set up Windows 10 on a new computer (like two days ago recent) and I was asked during setup if I would like to add any additional keyboard layouts. Is it not possible to assign a keyboard layout to a specific HID device?

No, and that’s been the bane of my life for 30 years under Windows. The keyboard layout applies globally to all HID devices. You may change it or apply different layouts to different windows, but essentially you can’t configure Windows and say “this keyboard talks US qwerty, that keyboard talk German qwertz”.

In Linux, you can assign a different layout to each HID device (finally, after years of people bitching and moaning about it), but the process is a bit convoluted and requires scripting and knowing your way around the system. But at least it’s doable.

I believe it’s doable also in MacOS, but I don’t know enough about Apple products to be sure.

I login to various PC’s at different locations using my implants and at first I started with just a flat reader on the desk, meaning I would have to skew my hand/wrist into a funny position. Quite quickly I fixed those readers to the bottom of my desk in a very natural position, so I don’t have to move my chair or strain anything. It is very quick and easy, gets the reader out of the way so reduces clutter and anyone else not in the know would have no idea there was an alternative means of authentication there.


Thats exactly what I was planning for my pc

I had originally had it installed on the underside of my desk but found the angle awkward (probably my shitty desk chair haha).

Yeah I suppose it depends on the height and position of the desk and chair as to how comfortable it will be for you. At one location I have it horizontal on the side of a desk, but another underneath.

I’ve been using my implant to unlock my PC for quite a few years. The first design was using development boards, but then I spun up something custom.

Some tips: Send Ctrl-Alt-Del before the password to help prevent it being sent to a text editor or such. Use a USB serial port for configuration and password changes.

Yes, you do have to take keyboard layout into consideration for a USB HID device. Antenna design to work well with implanted tags takes a bit of work too.


Mounting my reader underneath my monitor has worked for a while, but I’m trying to get round to a design which will fit inside a Dell KB522 (wired) keyboard with built-in USB hub. I’m planning to put the antenna in place of some of the multimedia buttons, but that might mean an awkward twist of the wrist to get a good read.

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