A digital signature (not to be confused with a digital certificate) is an electronic signature that is used to authenticate the identity of a message sender or document signer, and usually to ensure that the original message/document content is unchanged (document integrity).

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Why should one not use the same asymmetric key for encryption as they do for signing?

In an answer to a question about RSA and PGP, PulpSpy noted this: It is possible to generate an RSA key pair using GPG (for both encryption and signing -- you should not use the same key for ...
37
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2answers
9k views

Why are hand-written signatures still so commonly used?

Why are hand-written signatures still so commonly used? Can they actually prove anything? Two assumptions: If anyone wants to forge my signature I'm sure they will be able to do it. Even my own ...
36
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11answers
2k views

Does hashing a file from an unsigned website give a false sense of security?

Consider this. Many websites with software downloads also make available MD5 or SHA1 hashes, for users to verify the integrity of the downloaded files. However, few of these sites actually use HTTPS ...
29
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4answers
23k views

How to achieve non-repudiation?

If I have a message that I need to send to another person, how do I achieve non repudiation ? Is digitally signing the message sufficient ?
29
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2answers
3k views

Digital Certificate deployment: using two certs for each user?

At a large enterprise environment I have come across a deployment approach for Digital Certificates where each user is issued two (2) key pairs: One for signing documents, emails, etc. that is ...
24
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4answers
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how digital signature verification process works

I am not able to understand that how the digital signature is verified. I know that digital signature will be attached to the message and sent by sender to receiver. then receiver uses the public key ...
21
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8answers
21k views

Why do people still use/recommend MD5 if it is cracked since 1996?

It's still commonly recommended way of hashing passwords, even if it's insecurity had been proven in 1996 Therefore we suggest that in the future MD5 should no longer be implemented in ...
19
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1answer
21k views

What is the actual value of a certificate fingerprint?

In a x509 digital certificate there is a "certificate fingerprint" section. It contains md5, sha1 and sha256. How are these obtained, and during the SSL connection, how are these values checked for?
18
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4answers
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How do the processes for digital certificates, signatures and ssl work?

I have been trying to understand how ssl works. Instead of Alice and Bob, lets consider client and server communication. Server has a digital certificate acquired from a CA. It also has public and ...
17
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2answers
2k views

How safe are signed git tags? Only as safe as SHA-1 or somehow safer?

How safe are signed git tags? Especially because git uses SHA-1. There is contradictory information around. So if one verifies a git tag (git tag -v tagname), then checksouts the tag, and checks that ...
17
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2answers
3k views

Does my PGP key really need to match the e-mail address for which I'll be using it?

In considering whether or not I want to join the big web o' trust and put my keys on a key server, I got to thinking about how it would affect my e-mail address' exposure. I generally try to keep my ...
16
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3answers
585 views

What is gained by hashing the last block on-device?

Recently I encountered the notion of "hashing the last block on-device". It means that when computing a digital signature, the hash that serves as input for the actual signature computation is not to ...
16
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2answers
549 views

Which factors should I consider for devices that accept handwritten digital signatures?

These days many locations ask you to give your signature on a digital signature pad/device. As I am situated in Europe, the EU directive 1999/93/EC seems to regulate it. From what I have found out ...
15
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3answers
4k views

Does GPG key expiration add to security?

I've created a new GPG key to sign a software package in a source repository with an expiration date three years from now. It seemed like a good security measure because if the key is compromised or ...
14
votes
3answers
15k views

License key / Serial number generator and checker

I need a serial number generator and accompanying checker. I would like to be able to set a salt (and maybe a length). The generator should only produce serial numbers that pass the test of the ...
14
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6answers
2k views

Why not RSA-encrypt the entire document?

I have recently learned of a way for person B to verify that a document sent from person A is indeed from person A. Person A gives Person B his public RSA key. This must be done reliably. Person A ...
12
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3answers
625 views

Can signing too much compromise a private key?

Can a collection of many messages signed with the same private key be abused to either forge signatures so some (but not all possible) messages, or even worse to reconstruct that private key with less ...
12
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3answers
909 views

How are private keys handled in an enterprise?

We would like to start using digital signatures and possibly encryption for e-mails in our company. My knowledge of public-key cryptography is entirely theoretical with no practical experience. In ...
12
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1answer
478 views

What are the problems with encrypted but unsigned data?

In another question's answer, D.W. wrote: Make sure there is authenticity protection for the encrypted data (e.g., encrypt and then sign/MAC): you will need both confidentiality and authenticity ...
11
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3answers
8k views

Can I use a private key as a public key and vice versa?

I have code to encrypt data using a public key and decrypt it using a private key. This is useful when a client wants to send data to a server and know that only the server can decrypt it. But say I ...
11
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5answers
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What does “key with length of x bits” mean?

I'd like to know what it means to say "the cryptosystem C uses keys with a length of x bits". I do not understand what the bits length means... doesn't it depend on the encoding? The same word encodes ...
11
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2answers
1k views

What asymetric scheme provides the shortest signature, while being secure?

I've had a look at several signature schemes (DSA, ECDSA for the most common ones), and am wondering about whether there exist a scheme that would have the following properties : Be asymmetric (one ...
11
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1answer
12k views

SSL Certificate framework 101: How does the browser actually verify the validity of a given server certificate? [duplicate]

Sorry I know this is a complete noob question and at the risk of posting a somewhat duplicate topic. I have a basic understanding of public/private key, hashing, digital signature... I have been ...
11
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5answers
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A standard way to manually add a digital signature to a pdf file?

I've created a few certificates to use myself, but I find myself stumped when it comes to creating a certificate which contains a digital signature. First, how would I go about creating a standard ...
11
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7answers
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Deprecation of SHA1 code signing certificates on Windows

I have been keenly following the issues with regards to Microsoft deprecating the use of SHA1 code-signing certificates for Windows executables ...
11
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3answers
2k views

API message verification without storing private key?

I'm in the process of implementing a public API for my web service. Security is a key concern as money is involved. It seems the current common practice for "authenticating" users in API requests is ...
10
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2answers
1k views

How are digital certificates compared?

I have read about SSL and TLS; I know how RSA works and why digital certificates are necessary (more or less), but I am curious about how we prevent a fake digital certificate. The operating system ...
10
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2answers
243 views

What real life scenarios require separate end user certificates for Signing and Identity?

Based on this question, I'm interested in any rational argument that would support the idea of maintaining separate signing and authentication certificates. Conventional logic & wisdom says there ...
10
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2answers
384 views

Are there any meta-formats for crypto?

Are there are any (properly specified) meta-formats / schema formats for describing cryptographic message structures? I'm looking for a way to describe the format (where some channels might want ...
9
votes
8answers
575 views

Authencity of information displayed on an untrusted device

Suppose I have a (bluetooth/usb) device which needs to displays information on an external pc/phone. Is there a simple and effective method to garantuee that the information displayed hasn't been ...
9
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7answers
311 views

Proving running code on a website is unchanged

Can it be proved to the user that the running code behind a website with security related code is the same as published? I'm currently looking at a few new project ideas and one involves secure ...
9
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1answer
22k views

PKCS7 encoding in Java without external libs like BouncyCastle etc

I am working on signing and encoding of CMS/PKCS#7 messages (something similar to C# SignedCms). I have x509certificate from the keystore, rsa private key, ContentInfo. ContentType is "oidPkcs7Data". ...
9
votes
2answers
310 views

Electronic identity and digital signatures - why they are different?

It seems (to me at least) that is is generally accepted that "electronic identity" and "digital signatures" are a different thing. For example, in the Estonian ID card there are two certificates - one ...
9
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3answers
290 views

Is this a weakness of enveloped XML signature?

There might be a problem in many applications based on XML signature verification (provided I am not wrong, of course). Let's have a simple XML message with an enveloped XML signature: <?xml ...
8
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3answers
718 views

Most widespread use of PGP after 20 years

Phil Zimmerman released PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) on June 5, 1991. As we examine the legacy of that far-sighted and brave act 20 years later, what are the most widespread and helpful uses of PGP ...
8
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1answer
2k views

ADFS: Verify requests from relying party

In ADFS, serveral certificates are used. This is explained (very clearly) on this page: ...
7
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4answers
5k views

when people say a file has a checked md5 hash, what exactly does that mean?

ok I was just reading this site: http://www.zdnet.com/blog/bott/stay-safe-online-5-secrets-every-pc-and-mac-owner-should-know/3542?pg=4&tag=mantle_skin;content and thought of something I always ...
7
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2answers
355 views

Is a mail secure if it's PGP-encrypted, but unsigned when sent with DKIM?

I run my own mail server and would like to use different addresses on the same domain. If I were to sign mails from those addresses, I'd have to generate new PGP keys for each and every one of them. ...
7
votes
4answers
816 views

What good, standard digital signature verification clients are widely or easily deployed?

I'm looking for a good way to publish data along with a digital signature (and ideally a timestamp) which is as easy as possible to verify. For example, imagine an election administrator who wants to ...
7
votes
2answers
915 views

Enforce Code/Script Signing

I have both a couple of X.509 Code Signing certificates and a GPG keypair that I can use to sign against code I run on my VPS. Every now and again I write code for iOS, OS X and Windows and always ...
7
votes
1answer
545 views

OpenPGP Encryption / Decryption Process Using GnuPG

I want to know if my method of encryption can ensure the security of my data if my database was hacked as well as the authenticity of the data I am decrypting. I am using GnuPG's implementation of the ...
6
votes
3answers
776 views

Verifying android application integrity from server side

I have android applications (Mobile banking) that connect to my server and do online transactions (via Internet/USSD/SMS), I want to make sure those clients are not tampered with and are the original ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Is there a way to accept signed requests without storing client's password in plaintext?

We are developing REST Web service. We will give Identifier and Secret string to each of our REST clients. When doing requests, clients will authenticate themselves using HMAC algorithm (they will ...
6
votes
3answers
774 views

How can I prove that I wrote a certain blog post?

I would like to be able to prove that I wrote the article that resides at a given URL on someone else's blog. Is there a way that I can do this with public key cryptography? I know a bit about the ...
6
votes
3answers
476 views

DHE exchange and client authentication

If a server has a known public key and a Diffie-Helman exchange is performed and signed by that key, is there any benefit to authenticating the client before establishing a secure channel instead of ...
6
votes
2answers
5k views

When using symmetric key encryption, do we need to sign?

Say we're using a shared key between two parties, that has been distributed using public key encryption, is it still necessary to sign any data that's encrypted using the shared key? Or is it enough ...
6
votes
3answers
661 views

Is piping a `ssh-agent` signed message as a password secure?

There's an encrypted filesystem on a server I ssh into using public key authentication. Since a forwarded ssh-agent can deterministically sign a message (see also the ssh-agent protocol section ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

What are the real-time applications of long term digital signature with timestamp

I want to know the real time applications that uses digital signatures with timestamps. Specially I am interested to know the applications where we can trust an old signed document which is now ...
6
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1answer
29k views

How to use OpenSSL generated keys in Java?

I have my pair of Public and Private keys and my certificate. Those where created in OpenSSL (why? because I was asked to do it in OpenSSL). Now I want to use those things to make a Java app that ...
6
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1answer
354 views

How to Get and Set Digital Signatures with FDA 21 CFR Part 11 Standards

How do I get and set digital signatures with the 21 CFR part 11 standards as defined by the Food&Drug Administration of the USA?