Hyundai wants to make you the key to your vehicle. It recently revealed the first biometric reader for a retail vehicle, specifically a fingerprint reader. It will first be used on the 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe. A sensor on the door handle will automatically scan your fingerprint, with the same setup on the ignition button.
While smart keys that detect your approach and allow you to unlock the car as well as start the engine without getting the key out is a nice convenience, they’re a growing security risk. Thieves have found relatively simple and inexpensive ways to replicate the radio signal produced by the keys as you walk to somewhere like a store entrance, granting them temporary unfettered access to your vehicle.
Plenty of computers and smartphones have fingerprint readers and have offered this tech for some time. That means if Hyundai didn’t try to reinvent the wheel, this solution should work without many problems.
Hyundai did specify that its fingerprint readers use capacitance recognition. That tech detects electricity levels in different areas of a person’s fingerprint. That means there’s no lifting a fingerprint off a glass or elsewhere and using that to get into the car.