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General information



Please note: Due to changes in the DFN-PKI portal, we are constantly revising the instructions.


Certficates (X.509 or S/MIME or TLS) can be used to verify the identity of the owner, and eventually other properties (e.g. email or organisation), of a public cryptographic key (refer to public key cryptography for more technical information).

Such cryptographic keys can be used to generate electronic signatures and/or to establish encrypted communication channels.

Electronic signatures can offer:

  • authentication - linking the originator to the information
  • integrity - allowing any changes to the information provided to be detected more easily
  • non-repudiation - ensuring satisfaction (in a legal sense) about where the electronic signature has come from

The Registration Authority "RWTH RA" is part of the DFN-PKI .

The certificate applicant must be associated to the RWTH Aachen University.

The following certificates can be applied for:
  • DFN-PKI Global (Web based PKI from DFN-Verein) for user, group and CodeSigning certificates
  • GÉANT/TCS (Web based PKI) for server certficates
  • DFN-Verein Community PKI (Non web based PKI from the DFN-Verein)
  • DFN-PKI Grid (only for Grid-Computing, non web based PKI from the DFN-Verein)