In message <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> on Sun, 25 Jul 2004 13:41:56 -0600, Anne & Lynn Wheeler 
<[EMAIL PROTECTED]> said:

lynn> At 07:07 PM 7/24/2004, Peter Gutmann wrote:
lynn> >A depressing number of CAs generate the private key themselves
lynn> >and mail out to the client.  This is another type of PoP, the
lynn> >CA knows the client has the private key because they've
lynn> >generated it for them.

Peter, are you talking about generic CAs or in-corporation ones?  I
can definitely see different needs between those.

lynn> one could claim that there might be two possible useage
lynn> scenarios, involving two different thread models: encryption and
lynn> authentication.
lynn> 
lynn> from a business standpoint the encryption of corporate data
lynn> (especially data at rest .... which might include some of the
lynn> corporate jewels) can represent single point of failures ... if
lynn> private key is required for the recovery of corporate jewels and
lynn> the private key isn't reliably replicated (to avoid single
lynn> points of failure); then there is a serious, corporate,
lynn> overriding availability threat.

That's all and well, but I can't see why that would be interesting to
a generic, third-party CA.  If you're talking about a CA within the
same corporation, then I can understand, since they usually (as far as
I can guess) work from a different standpoint and with different
priorities.

What you describe feels to me like encryption is ill understood and
placed in the hands of random individuals.  If you want safety and
recoverability, there's nothing like one or several backups, maybe
protected with different means (different encryption, different
storage media (including vaults), different keys, and so on).

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