Are you an individual developer and not part of a larger organization? No worries, there’s an individual code signing solution for you
As a loan wolf developer, you at times may feel like an outsider. You don’t have a major brand name to back your software, and you may wonder how you can get browsers to trust your content. The solution? An individual code signing certificate.
Now, you may be thinking that we’re full of mud because there is no such thing as a code signing certificate for an individual developer — but that’s where you’re wrong. There is an individual code signing certificate, and you don’t have to be a part of a company or organization to get it.
I want to sign code for free — where can I get a free code signing certificate?
Sorry to burst your bubble, but free code signing certificates are like Unicorns. They’re lovely fodder for the imagination, but they don’t exist in reality! And, if you do find one, it must be fake. Beware of it!
No certificate authority offers free code signing certificates. Period.
As a developer, you know the importance of signing your software or app. After all, the two main purposes for creating and using a certificate authority (CA)-backed code signing certificate are to:
- validate your organization’s identity, and
- protect the integrity of your software.
Here’s something you may not know: cell phone apps are great way to spread malware. It turns out that enterprising hackers realized early on during the app craze that the general populace is overly trusting and will happily download and give full permissions to an unknown app just so they can put down location pins at every place they visit. This is where an “Android code signing certificate” can come in handy for Android app developers.
Fortunately, the smart phone OS makers, both Apple with its iOS and Google with its Android platform, have tighten up the oversight of apps on their systems, warning users about unknown downloads and regulating what shows up in their app stores.
Is your code signing certificate expired? Yeah, this is an issue for many developers and companies that handle certificate management tasks manually. Code signing certificates, like SSL/TLS and other x.509 digital certificates, don’t have an infinite lifespan. This means that they’re only valid for a set amount of time before they expire and can no longer be used.
Code signing is a critical step in software development regardless of what platform you’re working with. Microsoft is no different — anyone developing software using Microsoft .Net or any other language or platform needs to invest in a Microsoft code signing certificate to ensure their software is trusted.
Java is a popular programming language, but also one of the most commonly exploited. That makes the need to sign Java code all the more obvious. Nowadays, most devices won’t trust a Java application if it doesn’t have a signature made by a trusted java code signing certificate.
What is Code Signing?
A quick way to understand the basic differences between the three types of code signing certificates
Code signing, as you already know is a necessity for developers and publishers who are looking to make their software or executable scripts appear authentic and legitimate to the end users. Code Signing Certificates are X.509 certificates used to sign software code using a digital signature. Properly signed software will show the software publishers name (instead of a security warning) when users install the software.