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PKI: Looking at the Risks

Public key infrastructure (PKI) is an excellent technology to help users certify that the people or companies they are corresponding with are who they say they are. It has proven itself invaluable in e-commerce among other areas. As with any technology, however, it is not without its own security risks. Eliana Stavrou discusses these risks, and ways to minimize them.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:
  1. PKI: Looking at the Risks
  2. Trust establishment
  3. Private key protection
  4. CRL availability
  5. Key generation
  6. Legislation compliance
By: Eliana Stavrou
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January 24, 2005

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To be fair to the readers, I believe that it is time to explain the possible risks and threats associated with Public Key Infrastructure (PKI). Until now, I have given you a lot of information on how to use PKI. (Editor's note: see Eliana Stavrou's articles on ASP Free). Although PKI is considered a must-have technology, it is not bullet-proof. Any security solution we have applied has its own problems; so does PKI. A silver bullet may not exist to solve all the security issues, but a combination of solutions along with the knowledge of their drawbacks gives us the vantage to close open holes and create a strong security solution.

In this article, I will discuss concepts related to PKI technology, so you need to be familiar with the PKI process.

The risks that are described in this article are the following:

  1. Trust establishment

  2. Private key protection

  3. CRL availability

  4. Key generation

  5. Legislation compliance 



 
 
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