What is the Difference Between a Client Certificate and Server Certificate?
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Client certificate vs server certificate

08/01/2020 by admin with 0 comments

What is the Difference Between a Client Certificate and Server Certificate?

In today’s digital world, we one way or another depend on the internet for many things. Be it internet shopping, searching for recipes of our favorite dish, or social media. The Internet has become an integral part of our life.

But we must ask ourselves, are we secure? Is our data secure? And this is where the client certificate and server certificate comes to play.


They ensure the security of both our data and identity. If we don’t have these certificates, then our data will be as open to hackers as the sky.


But you must be thinking what exactly are client certificate and server certificate, right?

What is Client Certificate?

As the name suggests this certificate applies to the client’s systems. This certificate ensures that the client’s system sends the request sent by the system of the client and it is the client who submits the request.


So when the server receives such a request from the client it doesn’t have to hold back data from the system who sends the request and server complete the request.


Let’s take an example you are ahead of security at Maharashtra’s Chief Minister’s office. You control who sees him, who has access to his office, who will b get close to him, and who gets to sits beside him.


One day you receive a message from him over the phone that his political advisor is coming to meet him so allow him to his office. In this case, how will you know that the CM himself is speaking and the answer is you recognize his voice that how.

Microsoft Exchange SAN UCC SSL

Similarly, client certificate work as the voice to server-client. When the server receives a request from the client system with the client certificate installed in its server instantly obey the request.


Although the client certificate doesn’t do any encryption of data it sends. It added more security to password-based authentication.

What a Server Certificate is?

Similar to the client certificate, the server certificate is applied to the website, which improves the website’s security.


The server certificate is commonly known as SSL (secure socket layer). Once they install on the websites, it binds the owners’ identity, including hostname, domain name. The SSL improves the security of the website and protects any attack from the middle man.


When server certificate installed on the website it turns the protocol of website from HTTP to HTTPS here S stands for secure.


Whenever the client visits website that has SSL installed on it, it was shown the site is secure from any cyber-attack, site that doesn’t have SSL certificate install in them shown to be insecure by web Browser.


Also Read – What is SSL?

Let’s take an example to understand how SSL works.

You want to send your homework to your teacher and you are doing this transfer of information with a computer using e-mail. If the email you send with the website that doesn’t have SSL install in it then anybody who is on the network with you and your web Browser can grab the data and modify it. But if the website you used to send the email has installed SSL then if the third party grab the data all they can see is some numbers and weird letters.


SSL certificates work with 2 key encryption public key and private key. The public key is available in the public domain but the private key is given only to that system that receives the data.


The SSL certificate while sending the data encrypt it which can be only decrypted by a private key that is only available to the receivers.


Now let’s compare these two certificates to learn the difference between them.

Now let’s compare these two certificates to learn the difference between them.

Client Certificate Server Certificate
Install on the client’s system Install on the website
Doesn’t encrypt the data it sends Encrypt the data for security purpose
It is installed to give the identity of client systems to server Install to give servers identity to the client

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