CCC Digital Key Release 3.0 enables consumers to use their mobile device as a digital key hands-free

The Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC) announced that its Digital Key Release 3.0 specification – which adds Bluetooth Low Energy and Ultra Wideband (UWB) wireless connectivity technologies to enable compatible mobile devices with passive keyless access and engine start – is planned for completion by the middle of 2021.

“We are creating a world where our mobile devices become true digital keys for our vehicles, bringing a new level of convenience and accessibility for users,” said Daniel Knobloch, president, CCC.

“Our Digital Key Release 3.0 will allow users to leave their mobile device in their bag or pocket when unlocking or starting their vehicle.

“The broad support from our members allows us to develop Digital Key specifications that meet the industry and consumers’ needs for a global standardized and secure Digital Key Ecosystem.”

Digital Key Release 3.0 highlights

The Digital Key Release 3.0 specification will complement the Release 2.0 specification, which leverages Near Field Communication (NFC) technology for contactless communication between smartphones and vehicles.

Release 3.0 through implementation of UWB connectivity adds hands-free, location-aware keyless access and location-aware features for an improved user-friendly experience.

It maintains support for NFC technology as a mandatory back-up solution.

Digital Key Release 3.0 addresses security and usability by authenticating the Digital Key between a vehicle and the mobile device over Bluetooth Low Energy and then establishing a secure ranging session with UWB, which allows the vehicle to perform secure and accurate distance measurement to localize the mobile device.

Mobile devices create and store the Digital Keys in Secure Elements that provide the highest level of protection against hardware or software-based attacks.

The UWB exchange also generates critical cryptographic parameters in the Secure Elements to ensure the highest security in localizing the device to the vehicle and thereby authorize the user to access and drive the vehicle.

The Digital Key Release 3.0 specification will be made available to CCC members by the middle of 2021.




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