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Code Signing Certificate Vs SSL Certificate

What is Code Signing Certificate?

Code signing is the process of digitally signing applications, drivers, and software programs so as to provide a guarantee to the end user that they have not been altered or tampered with. Code signing certificate is a digital certificate that ensures the consumers about the identity and credibility of the author of the software. This is a credible way to let the users of the software know that the software is coming from an authentic source.

A code signing certificate confirms and displays the real name of the author of the software. A competent certificate authority issues this certificate.

How does Code Signing work?

  • Developers and publishers of software use code signing software to append a unique cryptic signature to the executable files. This is because operating systems, mobile networks, software applications look for a trusted signature to confirm the source of the code.
  • The process of obtaining a code signing certificate is fairly simple and is explained below:
  • 1. Enrollment: When a code signing certificate is applied for, a pair of public and private keys are generated to help you prove your identity. Once the identity is verified, a code signing certificate is issued by the certifying authority. This certificate contains the name of your organization and a timestamp.
  • 2. Deployment of the code: The author of the code then signs the file using the code signing certificate. A hash mark is created to the attached digital signature. Once the end consumer downloads the software the software application uses the public key to decrypt the signature. It then looks for the root certificate. Once this is found, your credible digital identity is established and your software is marked as safe to be downloaded.

Who Needs Code Signing Certificate?

Code signing is used primarily by software developers, programmers, and engineers who develop, update, and promote software.

What is an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) Certificate?

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is a digital certificate that proves the authenticity of a website and encrypts the information sent to the servers. To simply explain, an SSL certificate ensures a secure link between a website and the browser of the visitor visiting your website. This certificate ensures that all data that passes between the website and the visitor’s browser remains secure. This is especially important when there is an exchange of sensitive data or information like private or financial information.

An SSL certificate is an assurance for your consumers that they can securely browse, buy your products, services & offerings, and share private or financial information with you.

How does an SSL Certificate work?

  • An SSL certificate is quite easy to obtain and install to secure your website if these steps are followed:
  • 1. You need to generate an SSL Certificate Signing Request for the particular web server that you intend to secure.
  • 2. Once you select the SSL Certificate as per the needs of your website, you need to buy it.
  • 3. Follow the installation instructions and install the certificate.

Who Needs an SSL Certificate?

  • While it is suggested and strongly recommended for all business websites to have an SSL security, it is especially beneficial for these types of businesses:
  • 1. If you run an online business and share information about your products, services, and offerings online.
  • 2. If you accept payments from your customers online.
  • 3. If your customers share their sensitive financial information with you on your website.
  • 4. If you protect password logins.
  • 5. If your consumers store their personal contact information on your website like their name, address, employment history, purchase history etc.

Code Signing Vs SSL Certificate- What is the difference between Code Signing and SSL Certificate?

  • Many times, the two certificates are erroneously understood to be the same. However, the two terms cannot be used interchangeably. We are attempting to explain the difference between code signing and SSL certificate:
  • 1. A code signing certificate is used to secure software, applications, scripts, and executable that are downloadable to ensure the users that they have not been tampered with or altered. An SSL certificate is for securing websites.
  • 2. A code signing certificate does not come with warranties. However, you are assured of a warranty on the purchase of an SSL certificate.
  • 3. An SSL certificate secures the data that is transmitted between two web servers. A code signing certificate, on the other hand, attaches a digital signature of the author of the software. This is done so as to prevent any tampering or altering of codes and is helpful in protecting the users from malicious cyber attacks like those of malware and viruses.
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