Modern organizations, regardless of size, find themselves in an ongoing battle to safeguard their precious data from prying eyes and malicious actors. Central to this is Public Key Infrastructure (PKI), a technological marvel that serves as the backbone of digital security. PKI offers a well-structured framework that ensures secure key management and issuance of digital certificates, fostering trust in digital exchanges. Now, when it comes to deploying PKI, organizations stand at a crossroad: should they tread the challenging path of manual, in-house certificate management or opt for the streamlined and efficient route provided by 3rd party tools? As we delve deeper into the world of PKI in this blog, you’ll discover why choosing the latter could be the game-changer your organization needs. Let’s discuss…
With in-house certificate management, the IT team is responsible for issuing, installing, inspecting, remediating and renewing certificates. But it can be tough when their day is interrupted by lost, compromised or expired certificates that require urgent attention. Managing the lifecycle of hundreds or thousands of client certificates is daunting, but not impossible.
Here are some questions you should ask yourself prior to undertaking an internal PKI initiative:
1) Do you have the requisite security policy creation and management expertise?
2) Can you guarantee the security and integrity of CA signing keys and the handling of user registrations?
3) Are you up-to-date on crypto standards, protocols and algorithms?
To be successful, an internal organization needs to build, maintain, update, and support EVERYTHING! Employees must be trained and certified to keep up with security compliance requirements. …starting to sound like a bit of a PITA, right? Relying solely on in-house PKI solutions can be overwhelmingly manual and challenging to maintain even for the savviest organizations.
Simply put, managed PKI services bring the necessary infrastructure, automation, control and distribution of certificates and simplify and centralize management. You can also count on 3rd Party tools to follow PKI and SSL certificate management best practices. Here are some of the more helpful aspects of a managed PKI solution:
1) HSM Management: 3rd PKI tools often offer seamless integration with various HSM vendors, allowing organizations to leverage state-of-the-art security features without worrying about vendor lock-in or compatibility issues.
2) CRL Checking and Auto Healing: Certificate Revocation Lists (CRLs) are essential for maintaining the integrity of PKI. However, manually managing CRLs can be time-consuming and prone to errors. 3rd Party PKI tools often automate CRL checking and enable auto-healing capabilities, reducing the risk of revoked certificates going unnoticed and ensuring a more secure environment.
3) Certificate Management Tools: The management of certificates across an organization can become overwhelming, especially in large-scale environments. 3rd Party PKI tools simplify tasks such as certificate issuance, renewal, rotation, and revocation. This streamlining leads to increased efficiency and reduced chances of certificate-related outages.
4) ACME and SCEP Support: Third-party PKI tools often have built-in support for these protocols, enabling organizations to deploy certificates quickly and securely across various platforms and devices.
5) Move Away from Legacy Systems: Old systems tend to lack essential security features and updates, making them vulnerable to attacks. 3rd party solutions help facilitate the migration away from legacy systems by providing seamless integration with modern systems, ensuring security compliance and reducing exposure to potential threats.
Integrating third-party PKI tools into your organizational security infrastructure isn’t just a recommendation—it’s a necessity. By tapping into these tools, organizations can streamline certificate operations, elevate their security stance, and seamlessly align with modern security benchmarks. If you’re contemplating setting up a Certificate Authority, don’t settle with legacy ADCS, it’s time to embrace third-party PKI tools! Check out EZCA and learn more about how to modernize your PKI today! Don’t forget, there are a number of 3rd party tools that can be employed to assess your current certificate status and ensure you aren’t vulnerable!