Computer security experts call Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) the "panacea" for secure, trusted e-b

    Date04 Aug 2001
    CategoryCryptography
    3813
    Posted ByAnthony Pell
    PKI is a catchall term for the infrastructure required to manage digital certificates and highly secure encryption. It encompasses a great deal: industry standards, software and hardware systems, business processes and security policies ? even human resources within a company responsible . . . PKI is a catchall term for the infrastructure required to manage digital certificates and highly secure encryption. It encompasses a great deal: industry standards, software and hardware systems, business processes and security policies ? even human resources within a company responsible for carrying out various "trust processes."

    But the purpose of PKI is simple: to let companies and organizations conduct business on private networks and the Internet with the same level of trust we had in the old paper-based world. PKI has two main components

    • Digital certificates: software "credentials" that verify who people are much like passports or driver's licenses (but stronger in several ways).
    • Data encryption: a method of scrambling data as it moves across networks to hide its content and prevent unauthorized use.
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