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Removing the RSA Security 1024 V3 Root

There’s been confusion today about the work we’re doing on our root store, the set of trusted certificate authorities shipped with Mozilla products. The short story is this: we’re removing the “RSA Security 1024 V3″ root from that list. Its owners have confirmed that it is not in use, and not covered by current audits. We regularly check for roots whose audits have lapsed or for whom we don’t have an up to date point of contact – it’s part of keeping our root program healthy.

The confusion stems from a comment made in the newsgroup threads discussing the removal which suggested that the root didn’t have a current owner. We know where the root came from, it was added at RSA’s request several years ago and vetted according to our inclusion guidelines. When we contacted RSA to confirm current contact and audit information for it, though, we didn’t get a clear answer as to whether or not it was in use, covered by recent audits, or decommissioned. We expect every root in our program to have a clear and active owner and, failing to get that clarity from RSA, we moved to pull this root from the product.

RSA has since confirmed that this root is no longer needed and can be removed from the product. That clarity, while late, is welcome and confirms our original decision.

This legitimate but inactive certificate will be present in all consumers of Mozilla’s NSS security library until the removal takes effect. Questions about Apple’s inclusion of this root in their keychain system, and their plans for removal, are best directed to Apple.

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