How to Hack Proximity Cards & How To Prevent it

How to Hack Proximity Cards & How To Prevent it

Just in case you’re still using the old technology of Proximity cards, this is your friendly reminder that using cards, such as the Wigand 26-bit, has avoidable security risks. 

These out-dated Proximity cards transmit data at a very low rate of speed, at about 125,000 cycles per second. At this rate, the amount of information able to be transmitted to the reader is limited to a very small number.  

Given that Proximity cards only transmit such a small number over to the card reader, the possibility of the card information being hacked by a hand-held device or copied by a machine is high.

Copying Proximity cards can be done at self-serve key duplication kiosks you often find located inside grocery or hardware stores. These kiosks advertise duplicating both standard keys like the kind for any door lock, along with electronic credentials such as access cards and key fobs.  There are also devices, reader/writer/duplicators, available on Amazon for less than $50 that can be used to copy any Proximity access card.

This is exactly why APL Access & Security offers the superior Smart Card credentialing option for our client’s Access Control needs. 

  • At nearly 14 million cycles per second, more than 10X the speed of Proximity Cards, Smart Cards are harder to duplicate, more advanced, more secure option for access credentials. 
  • They also use both new and previous models of card reader encryption technology. So changing from Proximity cards to Smart cards means you may not need to change your existing readers.   

Smart cards can also hold more data so more complex information can be transmitted to a card reader. And that data storage is rewritable, which means as your security needs increase, which is often the case, so too can transmission information be reprogrammed as needed. 

Are you ready to make the intelligent switch to Smart Cards? Review your access credential options today, or any other Access Control or security concerns you may have. Find all of our contact information for both locations at


Your Friends at APL Access & Security

P.S. Some older card readers may not be compatible with Smart Cards. APL Access & Security is happy to review your current configuration and determine if switching to Smart Cards is your best option.

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