KUALA LUMPUR March 19 - DIGICERT Sdn Bhd, Malaysia's first licensed Certification Authority (CA) Wednesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Thailand's leading Certification Authority, Thai Digital ID Ltd to develop interoperatable Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) services for both countries.
The MoU was electronically signed by the chief executive officer of DIGICERT, Noor Azli Othman using the recently launched MyKAD PKI application, while Thai Digital ID was represented by its chief executive officer, Chartchai Srirassamee.
The MoU which was signed in Bangkok Wednesday, was witnessed by Thai deputy Prime Minister Suwit Khunkitti, who also chaired the event between the two leading certification authorities in South East Asia.
The primary objective of the MoU is to develop secure and trusted infrastructure using PKI technology for e-commerce and e-government applications between internet users in Malaysia and Thailand.
PKI is an infrastructure used to issue digital certificates and an electronic file to verify the identity of an individual over the internet.
Digital certificates are used to electronically sign documents online, whilst enjoying the same recognition as a handwritten signature, in accordance with the Malaysian Digital Act 1997.
DIGICERT's digital certificates are widely used in e-government applications such as the National Registration Department's MyKAD PKI application and the Ministry of Finance's E-Perolehan application.
In a statement released here Wednesday, Noor Azli, who is also chairman of the ASEAN PKI Forum expressed his appreciation to Thai Digital ID and the Thai government for their continual support.
DIGICERT and Thai Digital ID are both founding members of the Forum that is entrusted by ASEAN under the e-ASEAN Framework Agreement to promote PKI interoperability throughout the region.
Noor Azli said the MoU would enable DIGICERT and Thai Digital ID to take the lead in developing an infrastructure where PKI services could be interoperable between the two countries.
"This will allow trade between two countries to be done securely online thus minimizing cost and improve efficiency," he said.
He added PKI had been around for quite a while and had gained popularity especially in Europe and Asia namely in Japan and Korea as there was a need for a secure and reliable mechanism to reduce online fraud.
According to Srirassamee, significant co-operation was vital for the success of local and regional e-trading.
"Certification authorities must have a standardised, sophisticated and sound system in place, to verify and authenticate all transactions and parties involved, no matter where they are," he said.
Meanwhile in his speech, the National Registration Department director-general, Datuk Azizan Ayub, who was among the Malaysian delegation present at the event, stressed the importance of such efforts to promote PKI interoperability between the two countries.
"There is certainly a need to create an infrastructure where e-commerce activities can be done securely and protected by each country's legislatures, therefore reducing the likelihood of theft and online fraud.
Soon, he said the MyKAD PKI could be used for cross border applications because e-commerce was not only limited within the Malaysian shores.