Key fobs could soon become irrelevant, as technologies that are already implemented in even mid-range smartphones these days look set to reach the world of cars in the near future.
Vehicles with keyless access have become quite common, but this solution has been proven to be a security risk, as it enables potential thieves to hack them.
In fact, would-be thieves can easily buy devices that record and replay a key’s signal when it is sitting unprotected in a purse or wallet. Some devices are so powerful that they can capture a key’s signal through walls and instantaneously unlock a vehicle.
Insurance companies and automakers are aware of this, and one technology company believes fingerprinting, facial recognition and retina scans will be required to get access to future vehicles. Silicon Valley’s Synaptics is working on new and innovative ways of granting owners access to their vehicles, including through fingerprint scanners to not only open a car but to also start the engine.
“You’re no longer relying just on a fob. This will be a fob and a fingerprint. We’ll cover touch, sight, hearing and voice. We’ll cover all the senses but taste and smell,” he said.
Fingerprint scanners in vehicles won’t just make them more secure but, according to Synaptics, allow for things like geofencing and time-based access. For example, parents could customize certain elements of their vehicle, such as how much power it delivers, based on a certain time of day or when a particular user, like their offspring, is driving the car. Additionally, certain driver details could be stored alongside a fingerprint, such as their favorite seat position and music preferences.