DigiCert CEO John Merrill Discusses ‘Hellacious’ Symantec Project & Pivots to Quantum Security Risk
(CBROnline) Digital certificates giant DigiCert secures a massive 26 billion web connections daily, with customers including Paypal and Verizon; it also boasts a string of industry firsts, including being the first such company to launch an independent Certificate Transparency Log Server, the first to offer TLS for the Tor browser, and more.
This interview is with DigiCert CEO John Merrill who discusses the “Hellacious” Symantec project his company took on in 2017 when acquiring the “questionable” website authentication certificates from Symantec. “We acquired them November 1 2017, with 30 days to change all of their systems and point them to ours. That was probably a six to 12 month project. We did it in one month.”
Merrill is looking forward the quantum future. “We’ve been working with Microsoft and several other companies to create quantum computer-resistant algorithms; in the United States, the National Institute of Standards is having a bake off for quantum computing algorithms. Microsoft’s is there… so we’ve actually pulled a couple of those [applications] and we’ve we’ve created quantum resistant certificates already; extrapolating a certain level of cubit quantum computer –which could hack an RSA algorithm very quickly.”
He adds: “This requires some increase in computer power to be able to make those efficient… So it’s a treadmill we’re always trying to stay on. But for banks, who are investing in infrastructure they want to have in place in 10 years, the quantum security risk among their biggest concerns.”