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News

Fixed Fee Server And Personal Certification For US Educational Establishments

Comodo Group : 04 June, 2010  (New Product)
Colleges and Universities in America can take advantage of a trust service that offers unlimited server and personal certificates on .edu domains for a fixed fee
The InCommon Federation has announced the launch of a new trust service that will offer unlimited server and personal certificates to US colleges and universities. As the first certificate service of its kind in the US, Internet2, which operates InCommon, is introducing this offering to provide the US higher education community with a cost-effective means of deploying and operating a more secure and authenticated online environment for their campus constituencies.

'This new service provides tangible value to the US research and education community and extends a pathway for innovation on campus,' said John Krienke, chief operating officer of InCommon. 'By offering unlimited SSL certificates, we're providing the potential for campuses to significantly reduce their certificate-related expenses. But at least as important, later this year we will include unlimited personal certificates, setting the stage for campuses to more easily adopt important services like signed email and second-factor authentication. Economics are no longer a limitation for certificate possibilities.'

InCommon is offering this service through a partnership with Comodo CA, a major certification authority and Internet2 industry member. Through the agreement, US institutions of higher education can purchase unlimited numbers of certificates for SSL, personal signing, encryption, and code signing. InCommon partnered with Comodo, in part, because of the successful implementation of a similar program the company developed with TERENA (the Trans-European Research and Education Networking Association). The program launched last year has enabled its NREN members in over 30 European countries and international public sector organizations to offer certificates powered by Comodo to all education institutions throughout Europe.

'We are excited about the opportunity to join InCommon in helping millions of students in colleges and universities across the US to secure their online experience and communications,' said Melih Abdulhayoglu, chief executive officer of Comodo. 'Enabling students and faculty members with the personal secure certificate and second factor authentication, whether for email encryption or for secure access to the university's internal network, will prevent security breaches and leak of digital information.'

Any higher education institution with its primary location in the US, and qualifying for an 'edu' domain name, is eligible for the program. Internet2 member institutions will receive a 25 percent discount on the Certificate Service. Institutions must also participate in or join InCommon to take advantage of the Certificate Service. The service fee schedule is based on an institution's classification under the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and requires an initial three-year commitment. The annual fees for the InCommon Certificate Service range from $2,000 for small or specialized institutions up to $20,000 for large research universities.

The InCommon Certificate Service is accepting applications and will test the program with a small number of institutions during June 2010. The University of California Berkeley, an InCommon member, is the first university to announce that it will take advantage of this new community-sponsored service. A full rollout is expected in late summer of 2010. Institutions with expiring certificate agreements will receive priority, allowing them to avoid service interruptions. The roots of InCommon's SSL and personal Certificate Authorities are in all of the major Internet web browsers and devices.
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