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Automotive industry increasingly adopting biometric technologies


A new report by Venture Beat points to the increasing use of biometric technologies in connected cars to increase security through driver identification and authentication, as well as provide a more convenient experience.

In fact, a recent report found that the biometric vehicle access systems global market will increase from its current $442.7 million to reach $854.8 million by 2021.

At last month’s CES show, several firms demonstrated integrated biometrics technology for vehicle authentication including: Continental’s fingerprint and facial recognition technology for vehicle personalization and authentication; Delta ID and Gentex’s iris-based in-car biometrics system that authenticates the driver and delivers customized security and convenience features, and; Chrysler’s new Portal concept minivan with biometric technology.

The auto insurance industry is also increasingly adopting biometric driver authentication by charging premium rates specific to the driver of the vehicle, based on their individual history and characteristics. This method is expected to benefit safe drivers who currently pay premium rates based on a system that takes all drivers under a profile into account.

For example, the use of an iris-enabled rearview mirror that continuously identifies and authenticates each driver, can enable insurance firms to apply the appropriate insurance rates, ensuring that a teenage driver has a different rate than older drivers with more experience, even though they share the same car.

Aside from driver identification and authentication, biometric technologies can be used for a more seamless and convenient approach to in-cabin personalization, including setting the music, maps, and call history based on each driver’s preferences.

Connected cars can also significantly improve the safety of the driving experience. For example, biometric technology can monitor drivers’ eye movements for drowsiness and distraction, and alert them when they are falling asleep.

Despite the convenience and entertainment benefits that come with connected cars, they also bring a fair share of security and safety issues.

In recent years, a handful of organizations have emerged in the smart car and semi-autonomous vehicle space to draw attention to automotive cybersecurity best practices including Automotive

Information Sharing and Analysis Center (Auto-ISAC), I Am The Cavalry and Future of Automotive Security Technology Research (FASTR).

FASTR — which comprises of Intel, Uber, Aeris, Rambus and Karamba Security — recently issued a manifesto that serves as a call to action to the autonomous vehicle industry to integrate security features, according to a report by Threat Post.

“Autonomy promises to be one of the most significant safety mechanisms the world has ever built,” according to the manifesto. “But autonomy and security go hand in hand; autonomy and trust exist in equal measure.”

The manifesto states that automotive designs should embody confidence in the data used in autonomous systems, possess system integrity and ensure autonomous system availability.

“While today’s telemetric data analytics primarily concentrate on vehicle performance and location, tomorrow’s will be focused on highly sensitive consumer experience and personal data (e.g., advanced multi-factor authentication including 3D facial recognition, passengers in attendance, contextual voice processing records, payment history and details, location, driving habits, V2X communication records, etc.),” reads the manifesto.

Craig Hurst, executive director of FASTR and director of Intel’s industry alliances and marketing transportation solution division, says the auto-industry will need an “equally diverse set of problem solvers” to solve the full scope of issues.

The organization is hoping to recruit auto industry veterans, technology giants, startups, academics and hackers as members.

Earlier this week, the Future of Privacy Forum (FPF) and the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) released a new consumer guide that explains the guidelines governing the way personal data is collected and used by the latest generation of vehicles.

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