As your customers stumble upon your website, there are some invisible alarms going off in their heads. “Should I enable permissions for this page? Will they track my activity? Is my privacy already compromised?” And while this may seem extreme, their fears aren’t entirely irrational.
Enter Public Key Infrastructure (PKI).
PKI certificates essentially show your users a badge of trust. It tells them that their information is only going to those who absolutely need it and that their online presence isn’t at risk. Mostly, digital security certificates come in the X.509 format. Today, SSL certificates for PKI security are pretty commonplace. Let’s take a look at what some of the major PKI security challenges are and learn how you can improve your PKI management.
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Common PKI Management Problems
One of the primary struggles for businesses is gathering the trust of their customers. The digitization of branding now means that this very struggle applies to your virtual presence as well. The following are some of the most common PKI security challenges that business owners face:
- Lack of organization and tracking methods for SSL certificates
- Underestimating the internal resources required for effective PKI management
- Failing to manage the renewals of certificates; thereby, leading to outages and added expenses
- Storing certificates in easily accessible online locations, like spreadsheets
Most of the problems with PKI management and cybersecurity in general lead to significant expenses when it comes to reparations. It is wise to be on the look-out for these potholes and dodge them before the damage is done. Learn about the baseline requirements that an SSL Certificate Authorities must follow for their public certificates to be accepted for general use.
How You Can Improve Your PKI Management
As the Internet-of-Things and cloud-based services boom among businesses, managing PKI becomes crucial for developing secure IT infrastructure. Here are the best practices for PKI management:
As discussed earlier, storing private keys in spreadsheets or text documents, even if they are password-protected, can put your PKI management to severe detriment. One compromised private key or root CA can damage the entirety of the network by opening gateways to malicious attacks.
Your private keys should be stored in AES-256 bit encrypted software vaults or FIPS 140-2 certified hardware security modules (HSM). Choose HSMs that store keys and secure vaults. Enabling automated cryptographic rotation of private keys within the HSM can also act as your SSL certificate manager and protect them from threats.
A lack of pre-planned infrastructure can prove to cost businesses significantly. Developing custom, event-driven automation preferably paired with pre-built tasks and workflows can aid the cause. These solutions, if integrated with IT Service Management (ITSM) tools for ticketing and governance, can further the agenda of managing Public Keys.
Skilled resources are instrumental to the management of SSL certificates. Investment in critical infrastructures like PKI management is crucial to the implementation and operation of SSL certificates. Expert team members, valuable services, and trusted SSL Certificate Authorities can be found through cybersecurity providers. Outsourcing to expert SSL certificate managers can alleviate challenges like mismanagement of renewals, penetration in security, as well as developing backup plans.
Lapses in your PKI management can make you vulnerable to malicious presences on the internet. Investing in appropriate resources, choosing your SSL certificate managers wisely and integrating HSMs to protect your passwords go a long way.