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Issue Date: Vol. 54, No. 8, August 2014, Posted On: 8/1/2014

China's New Condom Vender Accepts ID Cards, Not Cash

Hank Schlesinger
TAGS: Health and Family Planning Department, vending machine, condom machines in China, high-tech condom vender

china condem vending machine
PHOTO: A swipe of an individual's identification card activates a sale in condom vender in China. Government officials assure privacy during transmission to central database.
HENAN, China -- The Health and Family Planning Department in the north-central province of Zhengzhou is placing high-tech condom vending machines in pilot program. To receive a box of condoms, consumers need only swipe their identification cards. According to local reports, each scan of an ID card is good for a 10-ct. condom box. Those between ages 18 and 60 can receive one box a month free of charge.

The new vending machines hold up to 80 boxes and are linked to a central database. Privacy, officials claimed, is maintained by partially concealing a citizen's name and identification number during transmission. The new venders will replace the previous cash-only units that charged a nominal fee of one yuan (about 16¢) per vend.

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