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SSL Certification from Thawte

By: Ryan Alders, Wednesday September 22nd 2010
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There are two agencies that certify the security systems of most online casinos. One is VeriSign and the other is Thawte. Actually Thawte is owned by VeriSign but functions as an independent agency. This article describes the background of Thawte and discusses the different types of SSL certification it offers.

Thawte was founded in 1995 by Mark Shuttleworth in South Africa. It was the first certificate authority outside the United States to issue SSL certificates to public entities. To date, Thawte has issued more than 945,000 SSL and code signing certificates protecting identities and transactions in over 240 countries. This includes securing the sensitive credit card and bank account information of online casino players from identity theft and securing financial transactions while making deposits and withdrawals at online casinos. Thawte has 40% of the global SSL market. In 2000, Thawte was acquired by VeriSign Inc. Though the Thawte brand name has benefited from the strength and reliability of VeriSign backing, it continues to hold its own as a reputed independent certification agency. In 2004, Thawte became the first certificate authority to recognize and secure Internationalized Domain Names. This was instrumental in enabling people to navigate the web in their own language but with complete security. In the online casino industry it has enabled the mushrooming of multi lingual gaming operators. Thawte is constantly improving its products through investment in research and development. The objective is to "stay well ahead of evolving security risks".

An SSL certificate from Thawte is a code that is placed on the web server, of say the online casino, which provides security for online communications. When a web browser contacts the secured online casino web site, the SSL certificate allows for an encrypted connection. Thawte describes this in common parlance "like sealing a letter in an envelope before sending it through the mail".

Thawte offers three levels of SSL certification. All three carry the Secured by Thawte seal. This can be displayed on the payment information or deposit and withdrawal pages of the casino to inform the players that the transactions will be secure. All levels are compatible with 128 bit to 256 bit encryption and work with most browsers. The authentication levels are different in each. The first has domain validation only. The second has full organization validation. The third has extended validation and is the recommended authentication level for online casinos. This is because online casinos cannot risk losing a single user for lack of trust. In addition to the seal it carries the Identified by Thawte icon. This icon turns the address bar green in high-security browsers and displays the verified organization name, making it easy for players to trust the online casino site.

Apart from SSL certification, Thawte also provides code signing certificates. Because it has become easy for developers to create code, Internet users like online casino players do not trust unsigned codes. There is a fear that unsigned codes may be malicious codes, or may generate errors or security warnings or become otherwise compromised. Hence users look for a trusted digital signature to authenticate the source and verify the integrity of content. A code signing certificate from Thawte shows that the online casino code is as safe and trustworthy as shrink-wrapped software.

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Comment by: Samantha2 On: September 24, 2010
That's great news. Just recently it was NETsol that I read here on casino advisor that was starting to get involved in securing online casinos. So ultimately this is a great thing for everyone!

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