Using Public Key Infrastructure

The Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) is intended to offer a means of providing security to messages and transactions on a grand scale. The need for universal systems to support e-commerce, secure transactions, and information privacy is one aspect of the issues being addressed with PKI.

PKI is a two-key—asymmetric—system with four main components: certificate authority (CA), registration authority (RA), RSA (the encryption algorithm), and digital certificates; the latter two were addressed in the previous chapter and this one focuses more on the former two. Messages are encrypted with a public key and decrypted with a private key. As an example, take the following scenario:

1. You want to send an encrypted message ...

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