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July 21, 1998

VERISIGN MOVES FORWARD ON OPEN PKI

By CBR Staff Writer

As businesses start to implement second-generation web applications, Verisign Inc wants to establish itself as the standard for securing those applications. Three new announcements outline how this could be done. According to Verisign’s director of corporate marketing, Anil Prereira, the first wave of IP-based applications provided only browser-to-server security or secured email. The second wave, he contends, will go much further. We see enterprise resource planning, virtual private networking and supply chain management being deployed this way, Prereira says, we call it secured business messaging. The three new initiatives position Verisign as provider of that security. First, the company is offering toolkits for use either by inhouse developers or independent software vendors and systems integrators. The tools support C, C++ and Java but, interestingly enough, not Visual Basic. Is that because Verisign isn’t seeing these sorts of applications being developed in VB? That’s what we’re seeing, Prereira confirms. The toolkits are sourced from Baltimore Technologies, Entegrity, RSA and XETI as well as Verisign itself. Second, Verisign has expanded its partner program, signing KPMG, Ernst and Young, Inacom and Netrex to sell its OnSite digital certification system. Third, Verisign is using capabilities it acquired with SecureIT (CI No 3,446) to provide training in public key management. We see that out enterprise customers already have desktop applications, Prereira explains, when they move to an extranet situation it becomes difficult for them to mandate what applications their business partners must use. With Open PKI and OnSite, they can say ‘Come into out secure extranet, we can provide privilege-based access control and the only client software you need is your web browser.’ This all speaks to that openness. á

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