PKI Interoperability Models (February 2005)

3.3. The Asia PKI Forum

The ASIA PKI Forum[13] is an international organisation composed of representatives from PKI forums in Korea, China, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau and Hong Kong. Its goal is to promote co-operation and interoperability among PKIs across the Asia/Oceania region.

In 2004 the Asia PKI Forum Interoperability Working Group released the Asia PKI Interoperability Guidelines[14], a document created to promote the development of a mutually agreed regional PKI framework. The Guidelines have been described by the Working Group as a referential roadmap for those parties interested in achieving PKI interoperability.

These Guidelines describe five PKI models and list the technical standards needed for interoperable PKI schemes. The five models are:

  • Cross-certification;
  • Cross-recognition;
  • Bridge CA;
  • Certificate Trust Lists; and
  • Accreditation.

In addition to the PKI Trust Models, the Guidelines also list technical standards for the infrastructure, and the manner in which they should be adopted.[15]

In 2001 Japan, Korea and Singapore formed their own Interoperability Working Group (the JKS-IWG) within the Asia PKI Forum, and conducted an interoperability pilot project. The results of the project are available online[16]. The project successfully demonstrated complete interoperability in cross-border transactions between the three CAs from each country. It is notable that the project simultaneously used cross-certification in Korea and Japan and cross-recognition in Singapore. (Cross-certification and cross-recognition are discussed below.)

[13] <>.

[14] Interoperability Working Group, Asia PKI Interoperability Guideline (Version 1.0), Asia PKI Forum, March 2004

[15] Version 2.0 of the Guidelines is expected shortly.

[16] See Japan, Korea and Singapore PKI Forum, Achieving PKI Interoperability: Results of the JKS-IWG Interoperability Project, 30 April 2002