GeoTrust is a digital certificate provider. The GeoTrust brand was bought by Symantec from Verisign in 2010, but agreed to sell the certificate business (including GeoTrust) in August 2017 to private equity and growth capital firm Thoma Bravo LLC.[1] GeoTrust was the first certificate authority[2] to use the domain-validated certificate method which accounts for 70 percent of all SSL certificates on the Internet.[3][4] By 2006, GeoTrust was the 2nd largest certificate authority in the world with 26.7 percent market share according to independent survey company Netcraft.[5]

Product typePublic key certificates
CountryUnited States

History edit

GeoTrust was the first certificate authority[2] to use the domain-validated certificate method[4] US Granted 8028162, Douglas D. Beattie & Christopher T. M. Bailey, "Methods and systems for automated authentication, processing and issuance of digital certificates", published September 27, 2011, assigned to GeoTrust  which is now widely accepted and used by all certificate authorities including Let's Encrypt. [6][7] GeoTrust was a restarted company in 2001 that acquired the security business of Equifax. The Equifax business was the basis of its fast growth. The founders of the restarted company were CEO Neal Creighton, CTO Chris Bailey and Principal Engineer Kefeng Chen.[8] Having no previous fund raising experience Creighton, Bailey and Chen used an existing company as the vehicle to acquire the business they had started at Equifax.[9] The buyout of the Equifax certificate business was inexpensive given the final exit price in 2006.[10]

VeriSign acquired GeoTrust on 5 September 2006 for $125 million. The main investor was St. Paul Venture Capital/VesBridge. ACG/ Mass High tech named VeriSign's acquisition of GeoTrust as the sell side deal of the year for 2006.[10][11][12]

Symantec acquired the GeoTrust brand in 2010 as part of its $1.28 billion acquisition of Verisign security business.[13]

Previous logo until 2020.

Symantec announced the sale of its entire certificate business in August 2017 to Thoma Bravo LLC for $1 billion[1] with the intention of merging it with DigiCert.[14] Thoma Bravo merged GeoTrust into DigiCert and GeoTrust is now owned by DigiCert.

Root Certificate Untrust edit

Following a dispute with Google the GeoTrust Root Certificate became untrusted.[15]

  • On July 27, 2017, Google posted a plan regarding Symantec-issued (GeoTrust) TLS server certificates with Intent to Deprecate and Remove:
    • December 1, 2017; all GeoTrust certificates must be issued from a new PKI infrastructure in order for such certificates to be trusted in Google Chrome.
    • On March 15, 2018; Google Chrome will show a warning for sites secured with SSL/TLS certificates issued before June 1, 2016.
    • On September 13, 2018; Google Chrome will show a warning for sites secured with SSL/TLS certificates issued by Symantec’s existing PKI infrastructure.

Beginning 1st December 2017 GeoTrust has been issuing all Certificates under the DigiCert Trusted Root TLS Certificate. [16]

References edit

  1. ^ a b Liana B. Baker (2017-08-02). "Symantec to sell Web certificates business to Thoma Bravo: sources". Reuters. Retrieved 2018-01-08.
  2. ^ a b Aumasson, J.P. (2017). Serious Cryptography: A Practical Introduction to Modern Encryption. No Starch Press. p. 429. ISBN 978-1-59327-882-3. Retrieved 2020-07-10.
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b "Top SSL Certificates Buyer's Guide". PCMAG.
  5. ^ "VeriSign To Buy GeoTrust, Combining Top SSL Providers". Netcraft News.
  6. ^ "There's certs and certs – VeriSign badmouths rivals".
  7. ^ "Let's Encrypt issues one billionth free certificate". March 2, 2020.
  8. ^ "Neal Creighton, CEO, GeoTrust - InternetNews". Retrieved 2020-05-22.
  9. ^ "GeoTrust acquires Equifax's digital certificate business". September 25, 2001. Retrieved 2020-07-10.
  10. ^ a b "Mass High Tech, ACG name top Tech Dealmakers for 2007". Boston Business Journal. 2007-12-06. Retrieved 2019-10-28.
  11. ^ "VeriSign Buys GeoTrust: $125M". Archived from the original on 2008-09-20. Retrieved 2008-01-04.
  12. ^ "VeriSign buys SSL certs rival for $125m".
  13. ^ Hoffman, Stefanie (May 19, 2010). "Symantec To Acquire VeriSign Security For $1.28B". CRN.
  14. ^ "DigiCert Completes Acquisition of Symantec's Website Security and Related PKI Solutions - DigiCert". DigiCert. Retrieved 2018-01-08.
  15. ^ "Google to kill Symantec certs in Chrome 66, due in early 2018". Retrieved 2018-01-08.
  16. ^ "GeoTrust Global SSL Certificates".

External links edit