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By now you're probably already aware of "symmetric key cryptography" - that's where you use a single key or password to scramble or encrypt some data.Only with that same key or password can you unscramble the data back into its original form.I'm not trying to cover the nitty gritty details, just explain the general concepts.I'm also going to be tossing the terms "key" and "certificate" around kinda loosely.What are Windows Root Certificates and should I download and install them?Root Certificates are one of the fundamental pieces of public key cryptography used by browsers and other services to validate certain types of encryption.
When your browser establishes a new https connection it validates the signature on the public key it gets from the site using one of those trusted root certificates.As I said, there are actually several certificate authorities.I happened to use Equifax, a more recognizable name might be Veri Sign, but in reality there are well over 100.That's the dilemma that secure websites face when they use public key cryptography to secure their connections.It works like this: How do you know that the site you connected to in the first step is who you think it is?
An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. (OK, and WGA updates, and a couple of other things apparently on Microsoft's agenda.) Not taking an optional root certificate update would, at worst, simply throw warnings when you visit a site that required a cert you didn't have.