Anapole-enabled RFID security against far-field attacks

Anna Mikhailovskaya, Diana Shakirova, Sergey Krasikov, Ildar Yusupov, Dmitry Dobrykh, Alexey Slobozhanyuk, Andrey Bogdanov, Dmitry Filonov, Pavel Ginzburg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Radio frequency identification (RFID) is a widely used wireless technology for contactless data exchange. Owing to international standardization and one-way security nature of the communication protocol, RFID tags, holding sensitive information, may be a subject to theft. One of the major security loopholes is the so-called far-field attack, where unauthorized interrogation is performed from a distance, bypassing the user's verification. This loophole is a penalty of using a dipole-like RFID tag antenna, leaking wireless information to the far-field. Here we introduce a new concept of anapole-enabled security, prohibiting far-field attacks by utilizing fundamental laws of physics. Our design is based on radiationless electromagnetic states (anapoles), which have high near-field concentration and theoretically nulling far-field scattering. The first property enables performing data readout from several centimeters (near-field), while the second prevents attacks from a distance, regardless an eavesdropper's radiated power and antenna gain. Our realization is based on a compact 3 cm high-index ceramic core-shell structure, functionalized with a thin metal wire and an integrated circuit to control the tag. Switching scheme was designed to provide a modulation between two radiation-less anapole states, blocking both up and down links for a far-field access. The anapole tag demonstrates more than 20 dB suppression of far-field interrogation distance in respect with a standard commercial tag, while keeping the near-field performance at the same level. The proposed concept might significantly enhance the RFID communication channel in cases, where information security prevails over cost constrains.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4409-4418
Number of pages10
Issue number17
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2021


  • RFID technology
  • anapole
  • multipole engineering
  • scattering

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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