A digital certificate is a declaration of authenticy from an independant and thrustworthy third party. This declaration is usualy in a specific format, of which X.509 is the most common and is readily supported in most e-mail clients. Signing your message with a digital certificate ensures authenticy of your message. Additionaly people having each others certificate can encrypt their messages. Each certificate contains your personal data (name, e-mail address(es)), public key (coupling personal information to this key) and a signature from a trusted third party.

Getting a certificate can cost you 60 euros per year. Fortunately there are cheaper certifying authorities like CACert. In order get a personalized certificate, you will need to have your identity verified. This is where the Web of Trust notary comes into play. My name is Twan van Enckevort and I participate in the Web of Trust certification program from CACert as a notary. As a notary I can verify your identity and grant you a number of trust points. When you have accumulated 50 trust points, you can download your own personal digital certificate.

In order to verify your identity we need to meet in person. This can be at my home (Amsterdam Osdorp area) during evenings or at work (Amsterdam Bijlmer area) during the day. You can contact me by e-mail using twan@roto.org to make an appointment. For the meeting please bring a valid photo ID for the CACert program.

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