[cryptography] Interactive graph of the CA ecosystem

Bernhard Amann bernhard at ICSI.Berkeley.EDU
Fri Dec 14 00:17:53 EST 2012

Hi All,

We just released an interactive graph that shows the relationship
between the root-CAs of the Mozilla root-store and their intermediates 
at http://notary.icsi.berkeley.edu/trust-tree/. 

Root-CAs are pictured as red nodes, intermediate CAs are green. 
The node diameter scales logarithmically with the number of 
certificates signed by the node. Similarly, the color of the green 
nodes scales proportional to the diameter.

The data source for this graph is the ICSI SSL notary [1], which we 
previously announced on this mailing list. We have been passively 
monitoring the Internet uplinks of a number of (mostly) edu
networks for certificate and SSL information for about 10 months.

Clicking on individual nodes reveals additional information about the 
CAs, especially the number of valid child certificates we currently 
know for it.

In the graph, the CA that directly signed the largest number of certificates
is the Go Daddy Secure Certification Authority, an intermediate of 
GoDaddy. Our current dataset contains over 74,000 certificates 
that it signed.

The DFN-Verein CA has signed the largest number of intermediate 
CA certificates. As you might know it provides certificates for 
many German higher education and research institutions. It creates 
a unique sub-CA for each institution for which it issues certificates.
Our data set currently contains more than 200 sub-CAs of it.
The DFN does this for administrative reasons. The control of the
private keys of all sub-CAs remains at the DFN and they check
each certificate request.

If you have any questions or comments about this, please let us


[1]: http://notary.icsi.berkeley.edu/
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