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Public key infrastructure is a collection of rules, protocols, and policies that are required to maintain, develop, transmit, use, hold, or even store and revoke digital certificates, as well as manage public-key encryption. A public key infrastructure's primary purpose is to enable the safe and reliable electronic transmission of information for a variety of network operations such as internet banking, classified emails, and even e-commerce. This is normally used for operations where basic passwords are insufficient for authentication. It is typically used where more stringent evidence is required to distinguish identity and verify the information being transmitted. The fundamentals or basic elements of public key infrastructure consist of hardware, software, policies, and the general standards that manage the creation, administration, distribution, and revocation of the keys and the requisite digital certificates. The first key element is normally a trusted party that is referred to as a certificate authority (CA). It acts as the first component that provides services that verify the various individuals, computers, and other components that are involved. It ensures that no stranger can access the services or computers in general; hence, the security is properly assured for. Then there is also the Registration authority also known as the subordinate CA. This one gives certificates that are used for specific purposes as is permitted by the Certificate Authority that is the main root.
The other part is the certificate database which stores all the certificate requests and also issues and revokes the requisite certificates that have been requested over time. It is the one responsible for giving permission to certificates that have been requested over time. It is also the one that revokes the certificates that it does not consider worth to be authenticated. The last part of the fundamental component of a public key infrastructure is the certificate store. It is usually located on the local computers. It is responsible for storing certificates and private keys that are needed for the public key infrastructure.
There is normally a difference between public and in-house certificate authority, in other terms called external and internal Certificate Authority. The in-house certificates are simplified and easily manageable compared to public ones that are normally complicated in terms of management in general. External parties normally trust digital certificates that are signed by a trusted external Certificate Authority such as Verisign that exists in public Certificate Authority, a provision that is not available with in-house Certificate Authority. The in-house Certificate Authority is normally cheaper to configure compared to the public certificate authority that usually requires you to pay per certificate. Therefore, I would consider that our organization uses a public certificate authority, as it is more trusted by the external parties and is more responsible for the security and accountability of the public key infrastructure.
One way that the public key infrastructure can help in securing signing in of the company’s software is by using keys that encrypt and decrypt content in general. The key pair should consist of one that is public and the other that is private that should be mathematically related. So it requires that an individual who wants to communicate with others can distribute the public key, but must be able to keep the private one safely. It follows that content that is encrypted by one key can be decrypted by the other one. It is, therefore, very secure and customers can believe that everything will be secure in their company’s software.
There are various reasons and benefits why organization needs this public key infrastructure. It basically enables the creation of a trusted environment for businesses that conduct trade over the internet. It minimizes fraud by authenticating the identity of people via the internet, a component that is needed in our company. It also ensures that the integrity of electronic communications is safe by minimizing the possibility of them being altered while they are in transit. Therefore, this is a good way to ensure that our organization is very safe in general.
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