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------- Forwarded Message
From: "LadyNada" <[email protected]>
To: [email protected]
Date: Sun, 26 Nov 1995 13:26:39 +0000
Subject: Post Office to approve some internet email
- -- Area : AEN NEWS -----------------------------------------( M-BOARD.SU1 )----
Msg# 22280 Date: 11-18-95 19:01
From: [email protected] Read: No Replied: No
To: All Mark:
Subj: Oh, great. The Post Office is going to certify Internet mail.
From: "Jared Armstrong" <[email protected]>
Originally to: [email protected]
Original Date: Sat, 18 Nov 95 18:47 EST
> Post Office offers Internet digital ID
> Certification authority a key enabler of electronic commerce
> By Gail Bronson
> Side bar WASHINGTON - Come next summer, the U.S. Postal Service
> expects to be up and running with a service that will identify
> senders and receivers of Internet messages, a critical enabler of
> electronic commerce.
> Specifically, the Postal Service will operate a certification
> authority for public-key certificates used to digitally sign
> messages transmitted over the Internet.
> The Postal Service expects the service to be of particular interest
> to anyone involved in electronic commerce or electronic data
> interchange, in which the ability to assure the identity of both
> the sender and receiver of information can be crucial.
> "Right now there is no way to figure out if messages on the
> Internet have been tampered with nor is there any way to
> authenticate the genuine identity of a sender," said Paul Raines,
> program manager for electronic commerce at the Postal Service. "It
> could be a dog on the other end of the Internet now for all you
> Limited beta tests of the Postal Service's system already are under
> way within the federal government, at the Federal Aviation
> Administration, Social Security and the Internal Revenue Service.
> "We're eager to work with VeriSign [RSA Data Security Inc.
> spin-off] and any other certification authorities to come up with
> ways to help with cross certification," Raines said. "We're not in
> this to compete with private companies, rather, we're trying to
> enable [the electronic commerce] industry."
> Some users may find the Postal Service certification authority
> service more appealing than private alternatives because its
> service will carry the weight of law - tampering with Internet
> messages would be as much a crime as tampering with regular U.S.
> mail. On the other hand, there is always the lingering concern of
> having to deal with a federal bureaucracy.
> The Postal Service intends to play two roles in the certification
> First, as a certifying service the federal agency will provide the
> code, or public-key certificate, necessary for recipients of
> digitally signed messages to identify the sender. This service will
> be necessary to decrypt mail unless the two correspondents
> previously exchanged their keys privately. Second, the Postal
> Service will maintain a server to manage a public register of
> public-key certificates accessible off the Internet, Raines said.
> The Postal Service will conduct market studies to gauge demand
> before deciding how much individuals must pay to obtain someone
> else's public key certificate. In addition, the Postal Service will
> sell for less than a dollar an electronic date-time stamp to prove
> the existence of a message in a particular point in time.
> "We're taking the same attributes of hard copy that make them
> legally binding and transferring them to electronic
> correspondence," Raines said.
> The Postal Service is working with several companies, including
> Premenos Corp., to develop the necessary software, Raines said. The
> user agent and interface specifications for designing software to
> interface with the Postal Service's server, however, are available
> free to any one willing to sign a licensing agreement, Raines said.
> Regardless of how such arrangements work themselves out, the Postal
> Service intends to operate this business on a nonprofit,
> self-supported basis. "We don't intend to have first-class mail
> supporting Internet mail," Raines said.
> Back to Current Issue
Anchorage, Alaska, USA
Last Free Place On Earth
[email protected] http://www.alaska.net/~jared
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