UK authorities test smart garbage cans

Summary:How well do you sort your garbage? Someone may be keeping tabs.

Is someone watching what you throw into your garbage bins using technology? Apparently that's a question being asked in the United Kingdom, where some city councils apparently are placing microchips in trash "bins" in order to monitor where the bins belong and keep track of them.

Privacy groups, however, believe that the government is planning to use the chips to look for ways to fine residents for throwing out more garbage than they should or for not recycling as much as they should.

Either way, it begs the question of how rugged these sensors are. From the way my own trash collector just threw around my garbage cans, I would image many of these chips will wind up at the city dump.

This post was originally published on

Topics: Innovation


Heather Clancy is an award-winning business journalist specializing in transformative technology and innovation. Her articles have appeared in Entrepreneur, Fortune Small Business, The International Herald Tribune and The New York Times. In a past corporate life, Heather was editor of Computer Reseller News. She started her journalism lif... Full Bio

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