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Let's say you can have some sort of surgery through the powers of superscience to transfer your consciousness into another body. They'd need a method to prevent all sorts of crimes, I think.

For example;

  • Someone kidnapping a wealthy person and forcibly swapping bodies

  • Transferring the mind of a child into an adult (the ethics of treating a four-year-old girl as an adult just because of their body being swapped are questionable)

  • A criminal avoiding detainment by swapping bodies
  • We'd need to avoid children having the surgery because nobody wants an emotional one-year-old throwing a tantrum with an adult body

I figured maybe there could be a mark or traditional scar that shows a person had the surgery, but that wouldn't really help much. What could the government do to keep track of who's who?

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Once this superscience/technology becomes commonplace identification will be completely replaced by non-physical measures.

Already nowadays we have a realm where your physical body is meaningless and identification happens only based on non-physical codes: the internet uses passwords, names & emails to keep track of who is who.

Once bodies are replaceable, all forms of identification has to be based on IDs & passwords people have to remember.

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    $\begingroup$ Those are ways for you to prove your own identity, not for someone else to determine your identity. For example right now if a government wants your identity and you burned all official ID they can still look into their copies of records and hope to find your face, fingerprints or DNA in their databases. $\endgroup$ – Thymine Feb 25 at 13:55
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To give it a more Sci-Fi feeling but keeping the roots in reality I would go for brainwaves scanning. Currently there are studies showing that such waves could be unique for each individual (https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/7435286). In order for this to work we will have to assume that the wave pattern will be unique to the “consciousness” transferred and persistent towards the entire life of an individual.

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Since you need to do some kind of surgery; the easy way is government will then just keep track of the surgeries that occurred and hunt down illegal non-recorded surgeries.

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The government would be able to keep track of someone's identity by implanting people with RFID chips. The RFID chips would be able to identify and track the host , if someones body is "stolen" they would just simply have to prove their identity by visiting local police station and provide passwords , ID numbers and certain personal information. The host of the stolen body would then be tracked and taken into custody where a reverse procedure would be performed.

However this might be flawed since most criminals would probably just poison themselves before swapping consciousness. So unless there is a safety measure that can somehow prevent the surgery from taking place. it seems like there isn't much the government can do to prevent criminals from stealing bodies.

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The algorithms. Use macro patterns and behavioral mapping along with cutting edge machine learning. It's accurate. Sort of. And will it become self aware?

What is a botched body swap? Maybe that can give you an angle. Can two people be in one? A govt. appointed Jiminy Cricket - only it seems like your own inner voice. ...

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Government would control the process and you would register each time.

For backyard swaps they would be vigorously hunted down with a death penalty and a reward for informers.

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  • $\begingroup$ And all government regulated body swaps would include implanting an ID chip, similar to the pet ID microchips inserted done by veteranarians: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microchip_implant_(animal) If that chip is always installed in a standard spot (like the right hand) it's easy to use this for identification machines or law enforcment. = $\endgroup$ – David Feb 25 at 14:46
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Everyone mentions some form of RFID.

What they don't know is that the operation involves something more sinister. They actually remove your brain! Your consciousness is uploaded to a chip since moving the brain itself is not possible.

Making even regular chips is hard and requires astronomical investments. Making those brainchips is viable only for the superpowers. Everyone else buys from those superpowers through tightly controlled channels.

Sure, black market does exist. But how many people can afford those already extremely expensive brainchips of the difficulty of obtaining them jacks the price up by fifty or a hundred time?

tl;dr Black market will exist, period. What you gotta do is limit it to the extreme.

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