If you’re interested in how digital certificates are used by both individuals and businesses, it’s well worth continuing reading to discover a basic guide to digital certificates and the security which they provide. As if you understand how digital certificates work, you’ll be able to use them to protect your privacy and to gain access to restricted data that you have clearance to access.
A guide to digital certificates:
How are digital certificates used:
Like passports, digital certificates offer key information about a business or an individual and are always issued by a trustworthy third party. Digital certificates also offer information that can prove their authenticity and can always be traced back to their user.
Who is responsible for creating digital certificates?
Third parties who offer digital certificates don’t create digital certificates. Instead, they are created by certification authorities. Who are also in charge of vetting individuals and businesses who apply for digital certificates. They also provide the security parameters for each digital certificate. For this reason, individuals and businesses should decide how much trust they place on digital certificates based on how much trust they have in the certification authority who created each digital certificate. As the level of security which each certification authority offers varies greatly, so it’s well worth learning about as many certification authorities as possible.
Layers of digital certificates:
There are root certificates that are created and signed off by the same certification authority. From root certificates come subordinate certificate authorities and end-entity certificates. If you want to see whether you should trust an end-entity certificate or a subordinate certificate, it’s important to check the credentials of the root certificate. All systems should include at least two layers of certificates and many individuals and businesses choose to run layers of digital certificates which have three tiers.
If you want to automate the process of signing your digital certificates, you should activate certificate automation on your servers. Once you’ve completed this step you’ll be able to schedule your signatures in advance. Which should save you a lot of valuable time.
How public key infrastructure works:
Public key infrastructures safely store digital certificates and are governed using encrypted keys. To encrypt sensitive data, multiple digital keys are used. Examples of which include private keys which are only given to key individuals as well as public keys. If an individual wants to access information which they are not certified to access, they won’t be able to access key information. However, if they have certification such as a digital certificate that confirms their eligibility to access certain data, they’ll be given a digital key to access their information. To learn more about public key infrastructure, check out https://info.keyfactor.com/what-is-pki.
In conclusion, if you were curious about the purpose of digital certificates and how they are used, hopefully, you now have a better understanding of digital certificates and their purpose. One key takeaway is to always research the issuer of a digital certificate to see if you can trust the certificate which you’re being shown. Especially if you run your own business.