What is a Proximity Key Fob?

What is a Proximity Key Fob?

by Mike Boehm on June 09, 2023

Proximity key fobs have become ubiquitous in recent years. Proximity key fobs have a variety of uses, from helping you keep track of your keys to their more common application in granting you physical access to buildings typically restricted to the general public (e.g., gyms and other businesses). A proximity key fob is a small (approximately the size of a quarter) fob that can easily be attached you to key ring or lanyard. Proximity key fobs store valuable and unique information (such as employee clearance level, etc.) that is directly tied to a unique identification number and that can be accessed conveniently and securely by a proximity reader. (There is a variety of other proximity technology available as well, such as proximity cards, proximity wristbands, proximity rings, etc.) 


How Do Proximity Key Fobs Work? 

Proximity key fobs utilize a special type of technology called RFID (or Radio Frequency Identification) technology. RFID technology consists of a microprocessor chip that stores information and an antenna which allows the key fob to communicate with a proximity reader. Subsequently, the card reader uses the system preferences to determine whether or not the information on the key fob is valid and should be granted access. For example, if the employee using the key fob does not have sufficient clearance to access the part of the business he/she is trying to enter, then the system will deny the key fob access. Most commonly, proximity key fobs are used for security validation within a company by using proximity readers in tandem with electronic locks. 

Proximity key fobs come in different bit formats which help determine the type of information that can be stored on the card. (26, 34, 35, 37, and 50 are some bit formats.) The bit format you use directly correlates to the facility code of the card and ranges in many different identification numbers, making each card unique and secure.  


Why use a Proximity Key Fob? 

Proximity key fobs can be used in a variety of ways by both private individuals and businesses. They are extremely user-friendly and provide a one-size-fits-all approach to security, making them more convenient than outdated methods of security like physical keys and passcodes. Whether you’re looking to secure your personal residence or an entire business, you should make the switch to proximity technology!


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