Perhaps if Michael Scofield from Prison Break knew all about RFID technology he wouldn’t have dared come near the bank. Simply because RFID is used to track items, products, even people.

Once upon a time, correctional officers used to keep track of prisoners by counting heads several times a day, which is time consuming and inaccurate. Not to mention that prisoners soon learn the routine which makes it easy for them to manage an escape plan, as their absence could go unnoticed until the next headcount, leaving enough room for the prisoner to break free.

Technology became so advanced that tools such as RIFD wristbands could provide correctional staff a user friendly, efficient system for collecting, measuring, tracking and storing inmate movement data. An RIFD system could prove to be an extremely secure, time-saving and cost effective means of managing inmates.


RFID is used to track inmates in real time, providing an early warning whenever someone attempts to break out. Its impact has been tested in maximum-security facilities & have prevented escape attempts & identified prisoners involved in riots.

The wristband on the inmates’ wrists acts as a tamperproof transmitter, each transmitter constantly sends off a unique signal that’s captured by the antenna and then processed through a computer software, which determines where the subject is at every two seconds. RFID readers are scattered all around the facility to capture signal of inmates’ wristbands.

The system alerts the central station when the inmates try to escape the prison when they damage or remove the band. It could also alert the central station when the inmate roam outside a territory where he doesn’t belong to for example. The system could also alert officers when two prisoners of rival gangs or different gender come near each other to stop violence, sexual assaults or even consensual sex.

RFID typically facilitates the investigation process. When 2 inmates get in a fight for example, all the other inmates refuse to identify who was involved which makes it extremely difficult for the officers to conduct the investigation due to the fact that there are many inmates in the facility. However, with RFID, the officers go to the system, and see who were involved in the fight and take disciplinary actions right away. RFID is fast, accurate and easy to use!
Moreover, RFID reduces inmates’ violence and property damage since everything is recorded in the system which in return reduces maintenance costs in the prison.

Furthermore, the officers wear transmitters to alarm the central station in case of an emergency. Whenever he feel threatened, he could push the button on the transmitter and immediately send signals of his location. As soon as he pushes the button, the system will be able to identify the closest inmates to the officer and immediately send help.

Indeed, RFID tracks movements in real time which allows the central station to identify the inmate and his location making it extremely easy to capture him again granting the officers the utmost visibility. This utmost visibility reduces violence among inmates & maintains the safety of the guards.

When implemented correctly, an RFID system could help keep inmates out of restricted areas and away from other inmates. Additionally, if an officer needs help, the system could pinpoint their exact location for quick assistance. The technology’s deployment purpose is to reduce violence, disciplinary actions, and escape attempts, improve incident investigations, and improve overall control in the prison, according to the study.

In short, correctional facilities have benefited plenty from integrating RFID technology within their system. It has reduced violence by 65% creating a safer environment, reduced failures to report to job incidents by 100% and reduced theft and property destruction by 40%.

RFID has definitely proved its worth as a security tool for correctional systems. With prisons having to deal with overcrowding, RFID could be a necessary piece of equipment in the future for corrections.


Leave a Comment