[cabf_validation] [EXTERNAL] Draft Ballot SCXX: Improve OU validation requirements

Paul van Brouwershaven Paul.vanBrouwershaven at entrust.com
Wed Nov 4 04:20:37 MST 2020

We got a lot of positive feedback using private channels, with the large majority of CA's indicating that they want to retain the OU field and willing to support this proposal.

Dimitris, you suggested in the virtual meeting 51 to create some “bad actor” scenarios, I have translated this into the attached risk register.

In the register I have suggested to remove item 6 from the proposal as I don't think the risk can be mitigated.

I would like to invite this group to think about these and other risks, and if/how they are or can be mitigated.
From: Validation <validation-bounces at cabforum.org> on behalf of Paul van Brouwershaven via Validation <validation at cabforum.org>
Sent: Monday, October 19, 2020 10:39
To: validation at cabforum.org <validation at cabforum.org>
Subject: [EXTERNAL][cabf_validation] Draft Ballot SCXX: Improve OU validation requirements

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As discussed on the last CA/Browser Forum call last week, we would like to retain the OU field. Our enterprise customers have indicated (using a survey) to rely on this field for identifying certificate owners in large organizations and governments.

With this (draft) ballot we try to align the `subject:organizationalUnitName` with the purpose as described by the ITU-T X.520 section 6.4.2 Organizational Unit Name.

A few explanations, this ballot:

  1.  introduces a requirement to verify the existence and affiliation of the unit with the Applicant
  2.  prevents misinterpretations by requiring self-reported values to be preceded or followed by a whitespace and the well-known words “department”, “division”, “unit” or ...
  3.  supports automation by linking to a directory system of the applicant and by allowing well-known pre-approved values such as “information technology”, “marketing” or “sales”.
  4.  supports manual validation using authoritative sources, an organization charts or public directory (e.g. https://www.gov.ie/en/help/departments/)
  5.  allows values or series as defined by a government, standard, or regulatory body
  6.  allows certificate tracking using numerals which can be preceded or followed by two alphabetical characters for easier identification.

Entrust provided a draft ballot redline [1] to improve the OU validation requirements. This is created as a Draft Pull Request to allow others to point out issues, and the current fixed commit version is [2], since [1] will be updated if/as feedback is received.

I'm curious for feedback on these proposed changes and looking for potential endorsers for providing a ballot to the CA/Browser Forum's Server Certificate Working Group as a whole.

[1] https://github.com/cabforum/documents/pull/225
[2] https://github.com/cabforum/documents/pull/225/commits/33ac251f0105f4ebb55ac22ce0c198796da685c3


Paul van Brouwershaven

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