According to a recent survey by Women In Trucking (WIT), more than 60 percent of female truck drivers felt unsafe at least once in the past year. About 20 percent reported being threatened by a weapon, and women rated their job security at just 4.4 on a scale of 1 to 10. Much of this has to do with risks like truck stop security, where security can be poor and vehicles can be easily accessible.
Cybersecurity company Irdeto developed Keystone to address the heart of these problems by providing fleet managers and truck drivers with a turnkey solution for keyless vehicle operation. It is a permission-based digital vehicle key solution that utilizes Bluetooth technology to enable proximity-based vehicle access through smartphones. The solution allows fleet managers to control when and how drivers and support departments can access and drive vehicles in their fleet. Using short-range wireless technology, Keystone can detect the approach of an authorized driver and begin preconditioning the vehicle even before the driver reaches the vehicle, according to a company press release.
See also: Women Highlight Persistent Harassment, Driver Training Issues in Trucking
Women drivers often rely on each other to learn practical ways to prevent unsafe situations, and this includes extra precautions to protect themselves on the road. For example, women often avoid parking in the back of truck stops to avoid walking long distances alone through parking lots, where there are serious security threats. Many truck keys have been known to unlock more than one truck, leaving women vulnerable to injury during much-needed rest stops. By eliminating the need for a key, only those who are authorized to open the truck and have the correct digital permissions on their mobile device can do so.
“Our mission to minimize barriers includes addressing personal safety. Irdeto’s keyless entry products protect drivers from intruders by limiting access to the cabin and allowing only authorized personnel to start the engine, ensuring driver safety. Safe,” said Ellen Voie, CEO of Women In Trucking.
“Women look for carriers who care about their personal safety on the road and proper tractor and trailer maintenance. We believe the widespread implementation of Keystone will bring more safety to the industry, thereby encouraging more women to pursue careers as drivers,” said Irdeto said Niels Haverkorn, senior vice president and general manager of connected transportation.