GlobalSign Blog

20 Dec 2018

A Look Back – A Look Ahead

2018 was a pivotal year for GlobalSign – and the security industry in general. From new partnerships and  integrations to expanded capabilities in Europe and significant developments in IoT – the most meaningful developments were tied to some of the biggest trends in security.

The World is Signing on to Digital Signatures

In many ways, the year was shaped by the world’s continued march towards digital signatures as the ’wet signature’ - viewed as less efficient - increasingly becomes obsolete.

To meet a growing call for digital signatures, earlier this year GlobalSign took the important steps of joining Adobe’s Cloud Signature Partner Program and the Adobe-led Cloud Signature Consortium. GlobalSign is the first global scale Certificate Authority to join both programs, enabling organizations using Adobe Sign to seamlessly create trusted and compliant digital signatures. As members, we’re now in a position to provide digital signing services to a wide-reaching market through standards, integrations and strong partnerships.

Another important milestone was becoming one of the first global certificate authorities as a recognized Qualified Trust Service Provider (QTSP) in Europe. Announced in October, we can now issue qualified digital certificates to users and organizations. Qualified electronic signatures and seals have the same legal effect as handwritten signatures and maintain the integrity and origin of the document.

Becoming QTSP-compliant is significant since Europe has been an early adopter of digital signatures, and laws have already been set in place to quicken the pace of digital adoption – including Electronic Identification and Authentication Services (eIDAS). This enhances trust in electronic transactions between citizens, businesses and public authority cross-borders. Under the law, QTSP’s are the only companies qualified to provide trust services and appear on their country of operation’s Trust List.

Look for this trend to gradually take hold worldwide over the next several years. One of the first countries to take the plunge is France, where as of January 1, all public tenders and contracts are required to be signed using qualified electronic signatures. It will be interesting to observe the gradual shift in other countries in the coming months of 2019.

New IoT product and integrations

Another sector experiencing growth in 2018 was in our Internet of Things (IoT) solutions group.

In April, GlobalSign announced our cloud-based, highly scalable Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) solution was integrated with the Arm® Mbed™ Cloud platform. This integration enables any third-party developer using Arm’s Mbed Cloud to quickly automate the issuance of digital certificates from GlobalSign, along with certificate management services. The integration also ensures every Mbed supported device can now have a unique device certificate from a trusted third party.

The Arm integration was based on our IoT Identity Platform - a set of scalable, flexible products and services to issue and manage billions of identities for IoT devices. The PKI-based platform provides each device or endpoint a unique identity, allowing each to be authenticated as it comes online. It is followed throughout the lifetime, proving integrity, and securely communicating with other devices, services and users.

In October, GlobalSign announced a partnership with Longview IoT and Intrinsic ID. Each Longview IoT device includes two security certificates provided by the IoT Identity Platform and are automatically provisioned by GlobalSign’s IoT Edge Enroll solution. This protects both the device in the supply chain, as well as data transmitted on its LPWAN network. This truly powers a secure, connected ecosystem with a Strong Device Identity for every one of Longview’s IoT devices.

There’s a lot more in store for 2019! Please stay tuned to this blog and the GlobalSign news and events page for our latest announcements.  Have a great (and safe) holiday season!

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