Technology Services

SSL (Secure Socket Layer) Certificate

Purchasing an SSL Certificate

  • SSL (Secure Socket Layer) is an encryption protocol that enables secure communication on the Internet. It protects sensitive data such as credit card information, hospital records, passwords, etc, during passage over a network. An SSL Certificate from a third party establishes SSL functionality for a specific web transaction.
  • The Vice President’s office has mandated that all financial dealings should be processed through a third party vendor. The Cash Management office has also stated that all financial transactions must be secure from start to finish. This means that any page on a Duke website that enables someone to go to a third party site to pay for something must also be secured using an SSL certificate.
  • Duke has joined with InCommon to obtain no-cost third party SSL certificates from Comodo Inc.(, a trusted vendor.
  • Contact your web sysadmin ( in Arts & Sciences) to request help in obtaining an SSL certificate from InCommon.


  • The site owner/web developer provides the sysadmin with the following information:
    • URL of the site requiring the certificate. It will need its own (usually 4th level) domain.
    • Division/department name.
    • Email addresses of the technical contact (sysadmin) and the web contact (site owner or web developer).
  • The sysadmin orders the site certificate.
  • The certificate is emailed to the web developer/site owner, who then forwards it to the sysadmin for installation.