Association News

NIST Proposes Update to Digital Signature Standard.

Press Release Summary:

Apr 24, 2012 - NIST announced proposed changes to FIPS 186-3, known as Digital Signature Standard, which specifies how to implement digital signatures that can be used to ensure integrity of electronic documents as well as identity of signer. Posted for public comment on April 10, 2012, proposed revisions clarify how to implement digital signature algorithms in said standard. Also, inclusions within proposed revision allow use of additional approved random number generators.

National Institute of Standards & Technology - Gaithersburg, MD

Original Press Release

NIST Proposes Update to Digital Signature Standard

Press release date: Apr 17, 2012

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has announced proposed changes to a standard that specifies how to implement digital signatures, which can be used to ensure the integrity of electronic documents, such as wills and contracts, as well as the identity of the signer.

These proposed changes to the Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) 186-3, known as the Digital Signature Standard, were posted for public comment on April 10, 2012. First published in 1994 and revised several times since then, the standard provides a means of guaranteeing authenticity in the digital world by means of operations based on complex math that are all but impossible to "forge". Updates to the standard are still necessary as technology changes.

The proposed revisions provide clarification on how to implement the digital signature algorithms approved in the standard: the Digital Signature Algorithm (DSA), the Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm (ECDSA) and the Rivest-Shamir-Adelman algorithm (RSA). Included in the proposed revision is allowing the use of additional, approved random number generators, which are used to generate the cryptographic keys used for the generation and verification of digital signatures.

The comment period on the proposal is open until May 25, 2012. Both FIPS 186-3 and a separate four-page document outlining the proposed changes are available at csrc.nist.gov/publications/PubsDrafts.html. Electronic comments may be sent to: fips_186-3_change_notice@nist.gov, with ''186-3 Change Notice'' in the subject line.

Media Contact: Chad Boutin, chad.boutin@nist.gov, 301-975-4261