Re: [pkix] Self-issued certificates

Peter Bowen <pzbowen@gmail.com> Mon, 13 July 2015 04:46 UTC

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Date: Sun, 12 Jul 2015 21:46:09 -0700
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From: Peter Bowen <pzbowen@gmail.com>
To: Erwann Abalea <eabalea@gmail.com>
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Subject: Re: [pkix] Self-issued certificates
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On Sun, Jul 12, 2015 at 6:52 PM, Erwann Abalea <eabalea@gmail.com> wrote:
> This isn't a self-issued certificate in X.509/RFC5280. It's a subordinate
> CA. Section 6.1 clearly defines how one knows if issuer and subject are the
> same entity.
>
> Entities in X.509 are purely technical; your company named "Example Trust
> Services" doesn't exist in this standard. If it existed, there should be a
> way to express if it's the same entity when it's located in the US or in MY
> (think about Digicert's certificates).

Merci Erwann.  Taking this one step further, X.509 has the following
definitions:

authority: An entity, responsible for the issuance of certificates.
Two types are defined in this
[document]; a certification authority which issues public-key
certificates and an attribute
authority which issues attribute certificates

certification authority (CA): An authority trusted by one or more
users to create and assign public-key
certificates.

Do I take it correctly that a single business entity (e.g. société
anonyme or SARL) may operate multiple certificate authorities and that
the term "entity" in the above definition does not refer to the
business entity rather the existence of each CA as being independent,
separate, and self-contained?

Thanks,
Peter