What is a EV or extended validation SSL certificate

Extended Validation (EV) SSL Certificates are issued only when a Certification Authority (CA) checks to make sure that the applicant actually has the right to the specific domain name plus the CA conducts a very THOROUGH vetting (investigation) of the organization. The issuance process of EV Certificates is standardized and is strictly outlined in the EV Guidelines, which was created at the CA/Browser Forum in 2007, specifies the required steps that a CA must do before issuing an EV certificate:

  1. Must verify the legal, physical & operational existence of the entity.
  2. Must verify that the identity of the entity matches official records.
  3. Must verify that the entity has the exclusive right to use the domain specified in the EV Certificate.
  4. Must verify that the entity has properly authorized the issuance of the EV Certificate.

EV Certificates are used for all types of businesses, including government entities and both incorporated & unincorporated businesses. Takes about 10 days to issue.

A second set of guidelines are for the actual CA and it establishes the criteria to which a CA needs to be audited before being allowed to issue an EV Certificate. It is called, the EV Audit Guidelines, and they are always done every year to ensure the integrity of the issuance process.

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