February brought the start of the exhibition season for CAcert with our presence at FOSDEM – one of the biggest Europe-wide developer conferences in Brussels, Belgium. Of course we performed our well-known assurances, which is very popular at such events, with which CAcert safeguards its certificates by checking users’ ID documents. This allows us to offer a safe and trustworthy certificate authority to our users. Of particular note was that interested people were seeking more detailed information about security – questions such as what it actually means, and why are we not yet in the trust stores of many of the web browsers. It’s true that Let’s encrypt is trusted by the popular browsers, but if you take a close look at the certificate of a site protected with a Let’s encrypt certificate, you will find out that it does not contain any information about the owner. This means it is impossible to verify the identity of the site and therefore it is basically uncertain to which site the browser is actually connected to. CAcert allows the site owner to publish identification information in the certificate after the assurance – for private users as well as for companies. This way, CAcert offers a clear mutual trust, which makes it worth importing the CAcert-Root-certificate from www.cacert.org.
But there’s more: CAcert offers client certificates as well and signs GPG/PGP keys. Anyone who always wanted to sign his emails and encrypt them if needed, can do this easily with CAcert. Most email clients supports S/MIME certificates or PGP. By this means the authenticity of the sender is verified, and the receipient can verify the name of the certificate owner. Also attachments like PDF can be signed this way and protect the document against later changes.
CAcert is supported by an Australian non-profit association, the operation of the server is safeguarded by the German incorporated society secure-u. This structure has advantages, but the Australian society is possible only as long as CAcert has at least three Australian residents as members of the board. In 2017 we want to bring the association behind the web of trust to Europe. This limits the resources of many of the active members, because the handover must be done under appropriate rules. Anyone who wants to support CAcert can find more details at recent blog post “Prosit 2017” or can send an e-mail to email@example.com
For a secure 2017!
Die OpenRheinRuhr in Oberhausen öffnet am Wochenende 5./6. November wieder ihre Tore für freie Software. Die Veranstaltung im Rheinischen Industriemuseum ist perfekt erreichbar direkt am Hauptbahnhof in Oberhausen.
CAcert ist natürlich dabei und informiert vor Ort über Risiken im Internet und Möglichkeiten, die Sicherheit deutlich zu erhöhen. Jeder Interessierte kann sich am Stand von CAcert über kostenfreien Zertifikate, darunter SSL-Serverzertifikate und Client-Zertifikate für sichere E-Mail-Kommunikation informieren. Dazu gibt es wieder spannende Gespräche über die Aktivitäten von CAcert und die Ausblicke für die Zukunft. Aktive Mitglieder sind gerne gesehen, Fragen werden sehr gerne beantwortet.
On the week-end November, 5th and 6th, the OpenRheinRuhr in Oberhausen open its doors. It is an ideal platform to get informed about free software – and of course CAcert will attend. The fair takes place in the Rheinisches Industriemuseum directly located at the central station of Oberhausen.
CAcert informs about risks on the internet and shows opportunities to increase safety considerably. Who wants to get informed about free certificates, e.g. SSL-Server certificates, or client certificates for secure e-mail communication is invited to meet CAcert staff for discussion on CAcerts’ OpenRheinRuhr booth. Additionally we are expecting exciting talks about the activities of CAcert and future prospects. Active members are welcome, questions will be answered gladly.
FrOSCon open its doors on August, 20th + 21st, and of course, CAcert is present!
On the annual FrOSCon event CAcert is present, willing to assure members and to have nice talks to the public. We are very pleased to take part in an event targeted on free software and open source. FrOSCon takes place at Hochschule Bonn-Rhein-Sieg in Sankt Augustin, near Cologne (Köln). We’re happy to welcome you there and enjoy nice talks about securing yourself on the Internet.
This years’ LinuxTag goes from may, 8th till 10th. Main topics this year are professional working with Linux and OpenSource, mobile devices and security. For the first time, it takes place in the STATION, quite in the center of Berlin at Gleisdreieck. Our booth is located in hall 6.
We’re pleased to talk to customers, to CAcert community members, Assurers and networkers for information exchange and knowledge transfer. And we’re liking to take the chance to talk about recent development at CAcert.
From now on, certificates from CAcert are signed with SHA512 as signature hashing algorithm. Doing so, CAcert improves the security of newly issued certificates over the previously used, usual standard in the industry for certificate authorities. Formerly created certificates remain valid of course. Due to limitations in Microsoft Windows XP without Service Pack 3 the new signatures cannot be validated there. An update to at least Microsoft Windows XP with Service Pack 3 or better (e.g. Linux) eliminates this limitation.
The community-based certificate authority CAcert issues the 1 millionth certificate.
In the time of insecurity protection of data privacy is particularly important. The best data protection starts where no more data than necessary for service delivery is stored. This is a basic principle for the activity of CAcert. In doing so CAcert performs all important services of commercial vendors: server certificates for protecting web and email connections, client certificates for signing and easy and at the same time effective encryption of email, for authentication and for code signing are certificate options CAcert offers for everybody.
This includes the great work of the community. They help CAcert to issue certificates free of charge and to be an extremely successful internationally active certificate authority. Right now CAcert has issued its 1 millionth certificate with helps users all over the world protecting their sensitive data.
CAcert is gladly announcing you the next big event with CAcert attendance: August, 24th-25th in Hochschule Bonn-Rhein Sieg in Sankt Augustin, near Bonn/Cologne FrOSCon 8 (Free and Open Source Software Conference) will take place, and CAcert will have a booth there as well. We are please to get in touch with you discussing about CAcert, recent trends and changes and looking forward to seeing you there!
Further information about FrOSCon: http://www.froscon.de/
Location of FrOSCon: http://osm.org/go/0GIHyj5b–?m=&relation=1322214
Lavabit has closed down its services as announced on Lavabit homepage, Silent Circle and maybe others have followed or will follow. Since CAcert requires members to be reachable by their primary email address we ask our members with Lavabit account to change their email address quickly. Just setup a second email address if you have not already done so and choose this to become the primary one. Do not delete your old email address because it will automatically revoke all your client certificates which contain this email address.