Energy deploys digital signature solution

Department of Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham Oct. 16 announced the deployment of a governmentwide license of a new digital signature solution developed by Entrust Inc., an Addison, Texas, provider of Internet security solutions and services.

In a public ceremony, Abraham validated a digitally signed copy of the department's e-government strategic action plan. Abraham validated the document using Entrust's public key infrastructure digital signature technology.

"This important development serves as a key milestone in meeting the security and productivity objectives of DoE's e-government strategy," Abraham said. "We are pleased to share this new technology with other agencies in the federal government."

The solution will allow the Energy Department and other government departments and agencies to time stamp and place secured documents on Web servers while protecting these documents from being altered after they have been digitally signed.

Recipients of e-documents will be able to transparently validate the documents' digital signatures.

The Energy Department defined the requirements for this digital signature technology and purchased a government-wide license to implement the Entrust solution at multiple federal agencies, according to Entrust officials.

The Entrust solution is a potential security standard for U.S. agencies and other large enterprises, according to the company.

"Digital signatures that can be seamlessly verified and trusted are integral to enabling widespread security, storage and distribution of government documents and services for public access," said Bill Conner, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Entrust.

Entrust CygnaCom, a wholly owned subsidiary of Entrust Inc., developed the solution. The solution provides verification, time stamping and security for Adobe Acrobat applications. It has two components: a plug-in that can generate and verify signatures on Adobe Portable Document Format documents posted to a Web server; and a verification-only plug-in for signature verification.

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