Corporate Blog

Some organizations decide to store their digital certificates on a RSA token device. One reason they do this is to deal with business operation environments where employees share computers and workstations. For example, a company which operates 24 hours a day ends up running three different shifts. In order to control computer costs, most of the time a single computer is shared between three or more employees. Even though each employee is issued their own user name and password, there is still a risk that one employee may forget to sign out of the computer at the end of their shift.

A general definition of a digital certificate is a special type of electronic certificate used by computer operating systems and applications to perform a desired function or operation. Some certificates come pre-installed with computer operating systems, which were placed there by the manufacturer of your computer or operating system. Other certificates are packaged into software applications for specific purposes, such as being able to access cloud storage environments.

The speed at which you are able to complete business transactions does translate to your bottom line. For example, if you are attempting to meet quarterly sales goals, and have pending transactions to complete, you want to ensure these are finalized before the end of the quarter. However, if your organization is still using paper-based solutions to confirm sales contracts, purchase orders and other related items, there are often delays in completing transactions.

Two factor authentication is a specific type of authentication process used by businesses of all sizes to add a second layer of protection to their electronic data and resources. This kind of authentication is also used with online connections, including internet, intranet, extranet, and Wi-Fi. Unlike traditional access methods, users must have a digital certificate issued to them to use during authentication. Without this certificate, their credentials are unable to be authenticated, so access is denied.

There are three different options for obtaining your own certificate authority (CA) system. You need to take the time to evaluate all three of these choices in order to help you choose a CA system that will fit with your organization’s needs, requirements and budget. Two choices are considered traditional CA systems, because for a long time these were the only two options available on the market. The first one is a managed CA solution offered as a service. This is similar to the web hosting and cloud hosting your organization may already use.

Sometimes an electronic signature is confused with a digital signature. It should be pointed out that these are two completely different types of e signatures in use by organizations today. With an e signature, anyone has the ability to attach their signature to a file, email, document, form or other data-type. Once they send the data to another person, this person is able to open the data without supplying any sort of security to validate and confirm authenticity of the data.

Whenever you create digital certificates with a certificate authority system, it uses the X509 standards. These standards are not only used to ensure each certificate has a similar layout and design, but also assigns the keys in the certificate to a specific name, such as a Domain Name System (DNS) entry, used for authentication purposes. During authentication processes, the root in the certificate uses this name and validates itself against this entry. It is important to verify that the entry you supply at creation is valid and correct.

Organizations which use single sign on authentication processes are able to improve their security by implementing SSL certificate solutions. This is because this type of authentication only requires users to enter in a single log-on name and password in order to gain access to all approved resources. Even if the resource is not immediately connected to, their computer stores their log-on information in the background and uses this to complete authentication processes without prompting users to re-enter it each time a new application or network connection is made.

Using a digital signatur allows organizations the ability to complete business transactions electronically. This is because the digital certificate containing the signature is encrypted using a mathematical sequence, in order to establish a value for the certificate. Any time a person signs a document, form, file or other data-type with their signature using their digital certificate, it prevents others from opening or altering the contents. The only way to authenticate the signature and reopen the file is with a digital certificate containing the signer’s public key.

There is a variety of terms used along with digital certificates, and how they are created and used. One term used is X509 and is the current standard used to determine the layout of the certificate and the information it contains. Another term used frequently is PKI, which means public key infrastructure, and has to do with how public keys are bound and tied to specific user identities, as well as their respective private keys.