security certificate

What is a certificate?

A digital certificate is a document that an organization provides from its Web site to confirm their identity, and to enable a secure connection.  Your Internet browser is designed to look for and check digital certificates.  If your browser sees a certificate it displays the padlock.  You can click the padlock in the browser bar to view the identity of the Web site owner and also check that it comes from a valid Certificate Authority.  (See, What is a Certificate Authority?)  In addition, the bro

What is a Certificate Authority?

A Certificate Authority (CA) is an organization that issues digital certificates for use by other parties.  (See also, What is a certificate?)  The idea is that the CA acts as a trusted third party to help you verify the Web identity of an organization or individual.  Examples of popular CAs include VeriSign, Entrust, Thawte, and Geotrust. 
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