Encryption is one of the most important things that modern corporations have to understand. Without encryption, your Internet services and network might be vulnerable. It is crucial to understand how all aspects of encryption connect together to implement it into your applications and business workflow.
PKI might be difficult to understand for most organizations, but it is a fundamental part of modern encryption. You need to understand how a digital certificate works and how to manage it. By not managing your certificate correctly, you are risking getting hacked. Encryption is only as good as your implementation.
You need to also understand how asymmetric encryption works to get the best results when managing your certificates. The reason for this is that this technology is the foundation of all certificates. Without this knowledge, you will be floundering around, not able to figure anything out.
How PKI and Encryption Work
PKI is called public key infrastructure. It is essentially encryption that uses both a public and a private key. One key is used to create the encrypted package, and the other key is used to read that package. If you don’t already know, encryption is simply a way of obfuscating information using a mathematical algorithm.
When you obfuscate something using a mathematical algorithm, it is almost impossible to break with modern technology. In fact, it will take a modern supercomputer millions of years to break one of the best encryption algorithms known to man. It is quite impossible for this to happen.
A certificate takes this methodology even further. A certificate is a file that was generated using asymmetric encryption. The way it works is that it is essentially an ID card. You tie your certificate to a computer or other device, and you can then connect it to a secure service. The service can verify the identity of your device based on your certificate.
This is essentially how the secured version of the Internet works. When you connect to a website with HTTPS, you are experiencing asymmetric encryption and certificate management. Inside your browser, you have a collection of certificates that you need to verify when you connect to a service. Your browser will then tell you whether this service is legitimate or not based on the certificate. It is one of the many reasons why people who self-sign this certificate will get an error message when someone visits.
How PKI Affects Certificates
The most important thing to understand about PKI’s effect on your certificates is to understand the way everything works. Since PKI is all the necessary things to manage certificates, making a mistake in this arena could potentially leave you vulnerable. It is why being an expert or managing things yourself is so crucial.
It is possible to manage your PKI certificate infrastructure yourself, but it is not advised. You are much more likely to make many mistakes that leave your network wide open to attack. It is one of the many reasons why many professional services are coming online to help you manage everything. These professional services do the job for you, and it makes it a lot easier for you not to have anything go wrong.
Manage Your Certificates
Another important part of managing your certificates is that you need to understand creating and revoking certificates. It might not seem like it, but being able to revoke certificates quite quickly is crucial to your success. When it comes to devices accessing your network, you wouldn’t want an employee that has just been terminated to access the network. It is one of the easiest ways to get your business sabotaged.
Being able to manage your certificates automatically and efficiently will make your business a lot easier. It will also make things a lot better and easy for you when it comes to building and scaling out your infrastructure. This can be the difference between a good business and a poor one.
Checking To Ensure That Your Certificates Work
After you have established your certificates, you have to make sure that your infrastructure works. You need to start using the various processes to figure out whether your certificate management works. It all begins when you go through the entire lifecycle of a digital certificate. You will have to create test devices and go through that process. For example, you should be testing the process of revoking a certificate to ensure that nothing goes wrong.
With everything being said, digital certificates are not foolproof. You need to understand certain things to ensure that you are not going about it in the wrong way. The biggest thing here is to really discover whether your certificates are being created and updated in the right way. One thing you should look for is how quickly it takes you to revoke a certificate.
You also need to ensure that you are issuing certificates for the correct areas and capabilities. You want as much information encoded into the certificate as possible, and you want to tie your certificate to the specific hardware. This is because you don’t want something happening in the future because you didn’t tie everything together.
Getting Encryption As a Service
One of the easiest things you can do to get around all of these problems is to focus on finding a cloud service to manage your encryption infrastructure. There are many encryption-as-a-service providers, and they can take care of your PKI management needs. The way they do this is through the cloud, making it a lot easier for you to get things done. When you have the cloud working on your side, you no longer have to focus on the nitty-gritty things for your business.
It is easiest to do things this way, as it leads to you having great products and services without any issues. There is almost no downside, and it will leave you in a much better situation with your encryption management.