Securities commission integrates PKI into EDGAR

Securities commission integrates PKI into EDGAR

The Securities and Exchange Commission recently integrated public-key infrastructure technology into its Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis and Retrieval system.

Rick Heroux says online filing must be secure.

The PKI project is part of the commission's continuing EDGAR modernization. Commission officials said the changes would reduce costs and make preparing and filing required financial reports easier. By law, publicly held companies must submit myriad financial reports to SEC.

VeriSign Inc. of Mountain View, Calif., a subcontractor of EDGAR vendor TRW Inc., will provide a 128-bit encryption application that uses the Secure Sockets Layer protocol.

'In 1996, when we decided to allow filing over the Internet, we decided we've got to have security,' said Rick Heroux, the commission's EDGAR program manager.

To conduct transactions on the EDGAR site, would-be users must get a password from SEC to gain access to a PKI enrollment site run by VeriSign.

On the VeriSign site, users can obtain digital certificates for an annual fee of $25.

VeriSign will use the certificates to validate EDGAR users. When filing documents, each user will fill out a form that in essence serves as the cover sheet for a filing and that contains the PKI authorization information. Subcontractor PureEdge Solutions Inc. of Concord, Calif., created the form application using Extensible Markup Language.

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