Moving towards keyless car access with Digital Car Keys




Over the last years, Thales has continuously been involved in developing alternative or complementary ways of entering and starting a vehicle. The objective is to offer digital keys to cars users and drivers to lock/unlock their vehicles and start the engine, using their smartphone or any other mobile device. Taking it from here, digital keys open a variety of automotive use cases that will make access and sharing of vehicles much easier.

To build users’ trust and keep the highest security level, mobile devices and vehicles need to securely connect with each other. To do so, digital IDs and associated digital keys need to be provisioned and stored securely into each component of the ecosystem: in mobile devices on one side, and in vehicles on the other side. This way, both sides will be able to recognize each other through a secure and mutual digital authentication, based on encryption mechanisms.

The goal of the Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC) is to develop a standardized ecosystem for global smartphone-to-vehicle connectivity solutions. The CCC represents a large portion of the global automotive and smartphone industries, with more than one-hundred-member companies. The joint effort among all these members led to the CCC Digital Key Certification, providing a standardized solution to ensure interoperability and security of implementation. This should ensure a large adoption of the CCC Digital Key by all mobile device OEMs and car makers.


In this article they go in depth about digital car keys, the safety behind them, and the process of how they function. I believe this connects back to my project because the use of a digital key would make getting your groceries in and out of your car easier and more accessible. This article makes me wonder how we could use this technology in more ways to help with curbside deliveries.