The Adidas World Cup commemorative soccer ball gifted to President Trump by Russian President Putin contains an NFC transmitter chip that caused quite a stir.
Russian President Vladimir Putin gifted President Donald Trump a 2018 FIFA World Cup match Adidas soccer ball at their summit in Helsinki last week. Bloomberg News reported that markings on the ball "indicate that it contained a chip with a tiny antenna that transmits to nearby phones."
Bloomberg went on to clarify that, despite hints from politicians, the chip is not a spy device. It is actually an advertised feature of the Adidas AG ball.
The NFC chip is placed inside the ball to allow fans to access player videos, competitions and other content by bringing their mobile devices close to the ball, according to Adidas' website.
The World Cup commemorative ball was screened according to "the security screening process that is done for all gifts," press secretary Sarah Sanders told Bloomberg. Bloomberg added that questions on continue to swirl regarding whether or not the chip was removed or potentially tampered with.
Trump said the ball was going to be gifted to Barron, his 12-year-old son.