PKI Architecture Definition

KZero Staff
Oct 17, 2023

Understanding what a Public Key Infrastructure is is helpful in the documents we all use, such as identity cards and driver’s licenses. Two elements can always be found with all of these documents: the certification that a specific identity is associated with its owner and the fact that these documents are issued by an authority generally trusted.

These are also essential elements of a Public Key Infrastructure (PKI): the certified identity, the presence of an authority that can certify, and a certain degree of trust toward that authority. With these elements, it’s possible to build a PKI Architecture that allows a trusted certification authority to create digital identities for a person, an organization, a website, or a device and verify this identity when needed.

How PKI Architecture Works

To better understand what it means to verify identity, let’s think about when we receive an email or access our home banking. In both instances, there is a complex structure comprising different subjects and elements, including cryptography and digital certificates—commonly referred to as Public Key Infrastructure.

These architectures can differ depending on the specific use case and an organization’s specific needs. Still, in general, they are designed to create a safe and trusted environment where digital communications and transactions are secure, protected, and linked to identities that can be easily verified.

Advantages of PKI Architecture

Below are some benefits of PKI architecture:

  • Authentication: PKI architecture can authenticate the identity of individuals, devices, and applications.
  • Confidentiality: PKI architecture can be used to encrypt data so that it can only be accessed by authorized parties.
  • Integrity: PKI architecture can be used to verify the integrity of data so that it cannot be tampered with without detection.
KZero Staff

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