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Red Hat bangs security drum

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Linux

Banging the security drum at the Linuxworld tradeshow in San Francisco Red Hat today unveiled an initiative dubbed Security in a Networked World.

As part of the programme, the Linux vendor unveiled its Red Hat Certificate System which is based on software that allows organisations to manage security certificates that are used to sign emails or authenticate users for online banking applications. It also supports authentication through the use of smart cards.

Red Hat has also worked with the Apache foundation to add support for the Firefox browser and the Thunderbird email client through the use of Apache's open source Network Security Service Libraries.

The collaboration will allow users of both systems to send and receive authenticated emails with Thunderbird, while organisations including online banks and web stores can use the system to authenticate users through smartcards in combination with Firefox.

The certificate system follows the launch of the Red Hat's identity server last June. Both applications are based on the iPlanet software that Red Hat acquired from AOL last year.

Other than the directory server however, Red Hat is not open sourcing the certificate system.

Product manager Mike Ferris told vnunet.com that Red Hat plans to open source the software at some point, but he declined to give a projected release date.

"We want to make sure that we have a well established user community as well several of the key customers. We want to work with them so we have a correct path towards open sourcing," Ferris said.

The certificate system will be available immediately at a fee of $6 per managed certificate.

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