Surface Laptop 6 smart card reader overview

In an era where digital security is paramount, Surface Laptop 6 for Business introduces an optional smart card reader on select 15" models. As a Secured-core PC equipped with a discrete TPM 2.0 chip, Surface Laptop 6 provides our strongest commitment to data protection.

Screenshot of optional smart card reader on Surface Laptop 6 15” model.

Optional smart card reader on Surface Laptop 6 15" model

Enhanced security and risk mitigation

The smart card reader, included on select versions of 15" models1, delivers enhanced security via its implementation of two-factor authentication (2FA). By requiring both a physical card and a PIN, the smart card reader minimizes the risk of unauthorized access, protecting against sophisticated cyber threats, including phishing and social engineering attacks.

Support for Common Access Card (CAC) and Personal Identity Verification (PIV) Card

The smart card reader is engineered to accommodate both the Common Access Card (CAC) and the Personal Identity Verification (PIV) Card, used by the United States Department of Defense (DoD) and other federal agencies.

  • CAC support: The CAC provides secure two-factor authentication for active-duty military personnel, reserve personnel, civilian employees, and eligible contractor personnel. It facilitates authorized access to DoD computers, networks, and specific facilities, besides enabling the encryption and signing of emails.

  • PIV card support: Similarly, the PIV Card is used across various federal agencies for secure access to federal facilities and information systems, ensuring a standardized level of identity verification. PIV credentials have certificates, key pairs, pin numbers, biometrics, and other unique identifiers that enable two-factor authentication.

Compliance and regulatory adherence

For organizations operating in sectors where regulatory compliance is stringent (e.g., government, defense, healthcare, and finance), the smart card reader helps meet strict access control and data protection requirements. It helps ensure organizations adhere to laws and regulations such as HIPAA, FISMA, and GDPR, which mandate strong authentication measures to protect sensitive data. This compliance is not just about avoiding penalties but also about demonstrating to stakeholders and customers a commitment to maintaining high security and privacy standards.

Operational efficiency and access management

Implementing a smart card reader streamlines access management across the organization. It simplifies the process of granting or revoking access rights, enhances user experience by consolidating multiple credentials into a single authentication mechanism, and supports a secure mobile workforce. This centralized access management improves operational efficiency, reduces administrative overhead, and enhances the overall security posture by ensuring consistent application of access policies.


  1. Integrated smart card reader available only on Surface Laptop 6 in Black in one of these configurations: 15" 5/16/512, 7/16/256, 7/16/512, 7/32/512 and only in US and Canada.