Hyundai Fingerprint Tech Claims Five-Fold Increased Security

Following the trend for mobile device technology gravitating into the auto world, Hyundai is claiming a world first in bringing fingerprint recognition into its range.

It says its automotive specification fingerprint technology will allow drivers to unlock doors and start the vehicle. Hyundai plans to debut technology in the new generation Santa Fe SUV model launching in selected markets in the first quarter of 2019.

A sensor will be located in the vehicle’s door handle and encrypted fingerprint information will be identified and delivered to a system controller inside the cabin. When inside, the driver can start the vehicle by touching a second sensor that is positioned on the ignition button. The technology also claims to provide a customized driving environment matching information on driver preference with fingerprint data, including the automatic adjust of seat positions, connected car features and side-view mirror angles.

Hyundai says it has addressed security issues on the smart fingerprint technology using ‘capacitance recognition’, which claims to detect differentials in the electricity level in various parts of the fingertip in a bid to prevent forgery and faked fingerprints. The carmaker further claims that the technology’s chance of mistaking another person’s fingerprint as the driver’s is only 1-in-50,000 making it five times more effective than conventional vehicle keys, including smart keys. Furthermore, it claims with real-time learning of fingerprints, supported by a ‘dynamic update’ system, the fingerprint system can continually improve its success rate.

Albert Biermann, president and head of research and development division at Hyundai, said: “In the future, Hyundai Motor plans to further expand the application of the technology to allow the adjustment of temperature, steering wheel position, and many other features which will be tailored to driver’s preferences.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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