[cryptography] How much does it cost to start a root CA ?

Patrick Mylund Nielsen cryptography at patrickmylund.com
Fri Jan 4 16:06:27 EST 2013


There aren't a lot of root CAs, but there is a very large number of
intermediary CAs. The problem is every one of them has the same power to
sign certificates for anything/any domain.


On Fri, Jan 4, 2013 at 3:01 PM, yersinia <yersinia.spiros at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Fri, Jan 4, 2013 at 8:41 PM, John Case <case at sdf.org> wrote:
> >
> > Let's assume hardware is zero ... it's a really variable cost, so I
> assume
> > (correct me if I'm wrong) that it is a trivial cost compared to legal and
> > audit costs, etc.
> >
> > So what does it cost to start a root CA, get properly audited (as I see
> the
> > root CAs are) and get yourself included into, say, firefox or chrome ?
> >
> > A followup question would be:
> >
> > Is inclusion of a root CA in the major browsers a "shall issue" process ?
> > hat is, you meet the criteria and you get in ?  Or is it a subjective,
> > political process ?
> >
> > Finally, it seems to me that since there re so few root CAs (~30 ?) and
> the
> > service provided is such an arbitrary, misunderstood one, that existing
> CAs
> > would be actively trying to prevent new entrants ... and establish
> > themsevles as toll collectors with a pseudo monopoly ... what evidence
> (if
> > any) do we have that they are pursuing such an ecosystem ?
>
> Many today say that there are too many root CA, not a few. Is not it?
> https://www.eff.org/observatory.
>
> have i missing something ?
>
> best
> >
> > Thank you.
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