Digital Key

An entirely seamless driving experience
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Why carry a smartphone and a smart key, when you can have both in one?

From the usage of traditional turnkey systems to remote smart keys, lock and key systems have undergone quite an evolution.

Development has only continued. Now, even a personal mobile device can act as a key – unlocking, locking, and turning on the engine without a separate, physical car key.

AUTOCRYPT’s digital key utilizes a PKI-based security system, issuing certificates at the module manufacturing stage, in accordance with policy. Certificates are issued in conjunction with the CA or the manufacturer’s CA. Manual issuance of a certificate is possible but is produced and inserted into the module through a separate program.

Highlights

All You Need to Know About Digital Keys

and stay prepared with AUTOCRYPT

What is the Digital Key?

The digital key allows for a smart mobile device to take the place of a physical key. With the installation of a mobile application, the digital key takes on all the roles of the traditional key – locking, unlocking, even turning on the engine.

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The digital key is practical and convenient, as it enables the driver to access their vehicles for driving in a seamless way, eliminating the need to carry anything other than the smartphone.

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The communication technology used for digital keys is Near Field Communication (NFC), which is the same technology most notably already used for contactless payment systems. Because of the embedded NFC technology in present-day mobile devices, a driver can utilize their phone in order to access their vehicle. 

Shareable, but Secure
As one can with a regular key, a digital key can also be sent and shared with others.

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However, in order to keep the sharing process secure, the sender can select specific users to receive the key and limit their use of the key to certain functions. This shareability can contribute to the expansion of car sharing services in the era of connected and smart mobility.

Industry experts believe that the overlap between the autonomous vehicle industry and the car/ride-sharing industry is inevitable, as sharing a car is becoming much more conducive to the economical statuses of much of the population worldwide. With digital keys, car-sharing services will become much more convenient in terms of scale and implementation. 

Market Forecast and Opportunities

The Digital Key Industry is expected to reach a valuation of USD 6 Billion by 2029, with a projected growth rate of

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*Credit: Persistence Market Research

Significant growth is expected to start from Europe, currently the world’s largest automotive market. China and East Asia are also showing promising prospects in the digital key market due to high smartphone literacy. 

Standards and Compliance

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The Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC), a cross-industry organization advancing smartphone-to-car connectivity solutions, is currently in the process of developing Digital Key Release 3.0, a next generation technology that supports passive, location aware keyless access through BLE in combination with UWB (Ultra-wideband). Because of UWB connections, mobile devices will be able to access vehicles from a further point.  

Digital Key 1.0 : Digital Key allows smart devices to safely lock/unlock vehicles
Digital Key 2.0 : Digital Key technology with standard authentication protocol, providing reinforced security and extendibility

Digital Key Support from Major Cellular Device Manufacturers

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Major cellular device manufacturers have joined the CCC and are supporting the expanding scope of the digital key. While the technical details of how the devices support the digital key have yet to be released, it is expected that they will support lock/unlocking as well as ignition control through biometric authentication (Face ID technology and fingerprint recognition).

These operating systems are used daily by 94% of the world, and exposure of access functions through digital keys are likely to contribute to a quicker expansion and adoption of the technology worldwide. 

AUTOCRYPT's Digital Key

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AUTOCRYPT is the first mobility security company in Asia to join the Car Connectivity Consortium, and is working with the organization in order to conduct research, studying the level of convenience and stability of the Digital Key. 

AUTOCRYPT’s digital key implements PKI for security, issuing certificates at the module manufacturing stage, in accordance with policy. Certificates are issued in conjunction with the CA or the manufacturer’s CA. Manual issuance of a certificate is possible but is produced and inserted into the module through a separate program.