Two main standards have evolved over time to implement PKI on a practical level on the Internet. Both are based on the X.509 certificate standard (discussed shortly in the “X.509” section) and establish complementary standards for implementing PKI. PKIX and PKCS intertwine to define the most commonly used set of standards.

PKIX was produced by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and defines standards for interactions and operations for four component types: the user (end-entity), certificate authority (CA), registration authority (RA), and the repository for certificates and certificate revocation lists (CRLs). PKCS defines many of the lower level standards for message syntax, cryptographic algorithms, and the like. The PKCS ...

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