SSL Certificates – What Are They?
For most people, SSL certificates are not important. This article aims at explaining why they are so significant.
In cryptography, a private key certificate, also called a private key or digital certificate, is a digital document that proves the ownership of a private key. A private key is the key associated with an account or a keystroke, which allows access to a secret or protected area of the computer. The private key can be obtained from a private key provider.
Public key certificates, also called public certificates, are another type of digital certificate. They serve two purposes. The first is that they show the public key’s association with the account and the second is to authenticate the identity of the person that is accessing the secured area of the system.
The key associated with a private key is a long string of numbers, letters, or other characters. An algorithm is used by a security service or browser to verify if the owner of the private key is trusted. If the algorithm verifies that the owner of the private key is trusted, then the user will be allowed access to the account.
SSL certificates are one way to establish the authenticity of the user or the public key associated with the private key. Once the security service or browser has verified the private key, it will allow the user or the public key to access the system. SSL certificates are issued by SSL Certificate Authorities (CA), a third-party organization that is granted the authority by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA).
When a person or an organization wants to issue SSL certificates, they first have to choose an existing certificate. This is done through the use of a Certificate Authority. The CA then creates a new public/private key pair for the certificate.
The process of creating a Certificate Authority is not difficult but there is a time frame involved. One of the most common methods involves a commercial provider. These providers have access to the private keys and databases of major certificate authorities and the ability to create new certificates at the request of their customers. Because this process involves a commercial company, a fee is charged.
In addition to commercial companies, there are other companies that provide private key certification services. These companies often charge a fee for their services, but typically have a shorter wait time to receive an SSL certificate. These companies often offer the option of purchasing an SSL certificate or signing up for a certificate directly from an existing private key. A private key certificate from an existing Certificate Authority can be transferred onto their server.
A private key certificate issued by a CA will provide the owner or user access to a secure area of the internet through their online site. It is the key which allows users to gain access to data or files stored on their site.