An Introduction to PKI and AATL

Introduction to PKI and AATL


Electronic signatures are the way of the future. But as with all things digital, security is at the forefront of all potential users’ minds. When the words electronic signature” is uttered, it is not a simple flick of a plastic stylus on an electronic pad. There are layers of security and encryption behind an electronic signature. This makes it a viable option for generating high-assurance and trusted documents. To ensure that personal data is secure, Conclude’s electronic signature services become a part of the AATL and are further secured by PKI.

What Is AATL?

AATL, or the Adobe Approved Trust List, is a program from Adobe where users can create digital certificates that are trusted. So, Adobe upholds the integrity of a signed document by tracking the signatures used on the document back to a source. For example, if the document loses its integrity, the program flags an error. 

The integrity of the documents can be traced back to the high-assurance and trusted certificates on Adobe’s list through a relationship or chain. Electronic signature certificates must be stored on a secure device. Essentially, retaining the document’s integrity to be a part of the AATL. Applying for an AATL certificate includes filling out a form. Which is then sent to a Certified Authority and signed, usually through a live video call. 

Signatures from Conclude’s service offering become part of the AATL, which is then further secured by PKI.


What Is PKI?

Public Key Infrastructure, or PKI, is a form of cybersecurity that identifies the connections and interactions between people and devices. 

Firstly, PKI is an excellent facilitator of safe and secure data transfer. This data can be anything from credit card details to other important personal information. And PKI uses a combination of a public key and a private key to encrypt data. This ensures authentication, confidentiality, and integrity of the data that is being shared. 

Secondly, when uploading sensitive data, this kind of security and level of encryption is what you want – to protect your privacy. A PKI works like a digital certificate, and the registration for this digital certificate is held by a Certificate Authority, a third party. SSL/TLS certificates are the most prevalent PKIs used in electronic signatures.


Electronic Signatures Are Secure

An electronic signature circumvents security issues by using a PKI to encrypt the data in a digital process. This validates the identity of a signee with an ID document or live selfie with a Certificate Authority. Once that process is complete, and the identity is proven, the user is given a unique key applied to their digital signatures. 

This is combined with a date, timestamp, and anti-tamper certification. The relevant document becomes a part of the AATL, creating a multitude of safety measures that retain the integrity of important information in a digital world.


Digital systems that use electronic signatures have every capability to be safe and secure with AATL and PKI. Banks like Absa are making full use of these security measures to uphold high-assurance and trustworthy documents for their clients. This not only upholds secure information but increases productivity and ease of use for both the client and the business.

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