SQL Server Key Management

SQL Server 2008 provides rich support for various types of data encryption using symmetric and asymmetric keys and digital certificates. As an administrator, you probably need to manage at least the upper level of keys in the hierarchy shown in Figure 12.1. Each key protects its child keys, which in turn protect their child keys, down through the tree. The one exception is when a password is used to protect a symmetric key or certificate. This is how SQL Server lets users manage their own keys and take responsibility for keeping the key secret.

Figure 12.1 Key hierarchy in SQL Server 2008.


Each SQL Server instance has ...

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