Near field communication and crowd sourced stolen bike recovery

Marshall Lind of San Jose CA has an interesting idea: he combines the Near Field Communication (NFC) capability of modern smartphones with a bike registry to create the Raven Bike Registry.

raven bike registry

You register your bike for a lifetime registration fee of $34.95 and receive the Raven System kit. This kit consists of an NFC emblem (for use by most popular Android phone released over the past two years), a QR code sticker (for use by mobile devices with older technology, such as all current models of the Apple iPhone, and an ID card.

The NFC emblem is a battery-free NFC Tag encased in a high-impact polycarbonate (bullet-proof glass) waterproof case. The stiff Emblem is designed to be bonded to a bike’s standard 28mm to 32mm down-tube by the bike’s owner or bike shop technician using the Snot Glue Kit included in every Raven Bike Registration Kit.

NFC is an evolution of the RFID technology. The Raven NFC tag has a unique ID code to identify the bike. When the tag or QR code is scanned by nosy passers by, vigilante, or law enforcement, the bike’s ID is sent back to Raven HQ servers. A response comes back that the bike is either “Secure,” “Stolen,” or “For Sale.”

According to Lind, the NFC emblem cannot be removed without damaging the bike frame.

Lind says ravens symbolize the community aspect of this device. He says, “Ravens are loud, clever, social birds that call out and bond together when threatened.”

Raven Bike Registry should be available sometime in March 2014.


  1. I suppose the idea is to inhibit bike theft because value is greatly reduced in an illegitimate sale?

  2. How is it not removable? I have problem believing that.

    Knowing a little about RFID, it don’t work very well with a metallic background(like a bike frame), and unless it got a battery, range is limited to couple inches, so u need to know where the tag is to find it. If it is obvious where it is, a thief can easily peel it off. i don’t see a cop or anyone care enough or have the time to check all the parked bikes.

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