For the last several years, digital signatures and the encryption of data for sending private files over the Internet, have been hot topics for the CPA community. Data encryption has ramifications in many areas, including continuous auditing, electronic tax returns, and financial statements reporting.
IBM has addressed the area of data encryption for digital signatures with two new consulting and implementation services: PKI Business Workshop and PKI Planning and Design.
PKI stands for "Public Key Infrastructure," and is a technology for addressing requirements of authentication, confidentiality, integrity, and non-repudiation of encrypted data. IBM has designed these two new services to enable companies to set up their own encryption system, as well as integrate PKI into existing technologies.
Another new development in the data encryption area is the PKI Center of Competency, a warehouse of tools, training and opportunities for customers to interface with IBM's alliance partners.