The Physical Security Interoperability Alliance (PSIA) announced it has approved the Public Key Open Credential (PKOC) NFC Card Specification-Version 1.1. The PSIA has reportedly been working with a broad group of industry leaders in the card, reader and access control industries to come up with this specification, which is likely to have a significant influence on the future of secure credentials.

Mohammad Soleimani, the chief innovation officer of Kastle Systems, introduced this concept to the PSIA in 2023 and has had a strong influence in engaging other companies in its development. “A standard for a secure credential on a smart card is a perfect complement to the work we have been doing on mobile credentials featuring PKOC. The specification relies on established standards and the Public Key Infrastructure, to provide a simple, but elegant solution, with the added benefit of more robust asymmetric encryption,” said Soleimani.

“The access control industry has been predicting a rapid shift to mobile credentials, but the reality is smart cards will remain as a staple for access control for at least the next decade,” said David Bunzel, executive director of the PSIA. “PKOC enabled on an access card provides two important benefits: 1. More robust security featuring asymmetric encryption and 2. A reliable migration path from cards to mobile credentials.”

“Physical Access is the next frontier for smart cards, said GW Habraken, co-founder and managing director of Taglio. Our customers want a single credential that can be used for both logical and physical access. The PSIA’s introduction of a card version of its Public Key Open Credential (PKOC) specification will be a perfect complement to this objective.

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