Showing posts from April, 2018

Public Key Certificates

A public key certificate provides a safe way for an entity to pass on its public key to be used in asymmetric cryptography. The public key certificate avoids the following situation: if Charlie creates his own public key and private key, he can claim that he is Alice and send his public key to Bob. Bob will be able to communicate with Charlie, but Bob will think that he is sending his data to Alice. A public key certificate can be thought of as the digital equivalent of a passport. It is issued by a trusted organization and provides identification for the bearer. A trusted organization that issues public key certificates is known as a certificate authority (CA). The CA can be likened to a notary public. To obtain a certificate from a CA, one must provide proof of identity. When the CA is confident that the applicant represents the organization it says it represents, the CA signs the certificate attesting to the validity of the information contained within the certificate. A public ke…