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Security

Security

Security is built into the product. Notes was the first widely adopted software product to use public key cryptography for client-server and server-server authentication and for encryption of data, and it remains the product with the largest installed base of PKI users. Until US laws regulating encryption were changed in 2000, Lotus was prohibited from exporting versions of Notes that supported symmetric encryption keys that were longer than 40 bits. At one point, Lotus negotiated an agreement with the NSA that allowed export of a version that supported stronger keys with 64 bits, but 24 of the bits were encrypted with a special key and included in the message to provide a "workload reduction factor" for the NSA. The net effect of this was that users of Notes outside of the US had stronger protection against private sector industrial espionage, but no additional protection against spying by the US government. This implementation was not a secret - in fact it was widely announced - but with some justification many people do consider it to be a backdoor. Some governments objected to being put at a disadvantage to the NSA, and as a result Lotus continued to support the 40 bit version for export to those countries. Under current US export laws, Lotus supports only one version of the Notes PKI with even stronger keys and no workload reduction factor. The Domino server's security tools also include S/MIME, SSL 3.0 support with industry standard key sizes for HTTP and other Internet protocols, X.509 client certificates, and an integrated certificate authority.

Additional web pages related to

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  • Lotus Notes Client
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