What is Certificate-Based Authentication?

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What is certificate-based authentication and what are the processes involved when using it?


A certificate-based authentication scheme is a scheme that uses a public key cryptography and digital certificate to authenticate a user. A digital certificate is an electronic form that contains identification data, public key, and the digital signature of a certification authority derived from that certification authority’s private key. When a user signs on to the server, he provides his digital certificate that has the public key and signature of the certification authority. The server then confirms the validity of the digital signature and if the certificate has been issued by a trusted certificate authority or not. The server then authenticates the user with public key cryptography to confirm the user is in possession of the private key associated with the certificate.

The processes involved when using certificate-based mutual authentication:

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