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Free Code Signing Certificate – Where Can I Get It?

Code Signing Certificate is not available at free of cost, but you can purchase it at a cheap price from authorized reseller.

The digital world is massive, and millions of users download software applications daily for personal or official use. Though nobody wants to download a compromised application, which can affect their systems, the majority of the users seem to be unaware of the security of these applications, i.e., they are unaware whether the applications they are downloading are secured or not.

That’s the sole reason why operating systems like Microsoft, Apple, Android issue warning messages for unaware users who are trying to download these compromised applications.

When seen from the perspective of software developers, these messages mean acceptance or cancellation of their software download. Of course, these cancellations are unfortunate for their business.

Hence, code signing certificates were introduced to prevent these adverse situations, message alerts, cancelled downloads, and gain reliability.

What is a Code Signing Certificate?

Various digital certificates secure the web, out of which Code Signing Certificates are used to digitally sign the code of an application or software program. Web developers use these certificates to digitally sign executables, software programs, application codes, and other drivers.

The main purpose of this certificate is to impart confidence to the users by stating that an intruder did not alter the application or software code they are using.

This certificate comprises your signature, your organization’s name, and a timestamp.

Code signing certificates use the public key to tie the organization’s identity. This key is mathematically linked with a private key. So, the web developer uses the private key to sign the code digitally, and the end-user will use the linked public key to verify the developer’s identity.

Why is a Code Signing Certificate Important for Software and Application?

The importance of this digital certificate can be judged from the below-mentioned factors. Let’s check them out.

Establishes Credibility

An application must be digitally signed with a reliable code signing certificate to establish Credibility.

A few operating systems like Windows inform the users via alerts whenever they download an unsecured application.

Example: Windows programs “signed by an EV code signing certificate immediately establish a reputation with SmartScreen services.

Validates the Publisher’s Identity

It’s not easy for a fraudster to obtain a code signing certificate because the Certificate Authorities (CAs) confirm the publisher’s identity through their extensive vetting process. This includes cross-checking legal documents like government id, telephone verification, locality presence, organization authentication, and final verification call.

In the case of individual verification, the organization’s checking will be excluded. Once the CA is satisfied with the verification process, they will issue the same to the concerned publisher.

code signing certificates warning massage

This certificate mentions the software publisher’s identity, as shown in the above image.

Confirmation of Authenticity

When codes and executables are signed digitally by the software developer using this certificate, it symbolizes authenticity to the customers and end-users.

The signature is proof of genuine software and a publisher whose name is imbibed on it. Other confirmation includes the authenticity of the application and ensures that the same is not compromised by intruders, thus giving a secured signal to users.

Preserves Code Integrity

Cyber-criminals always find means to transfer malicious codes into systems, networks, and applications. These criminals alter the software applications and imitate the reliable software applications to cheat users. This move can hoax users into downloading these malicious codes into their networks.

Their motto to grab sensitive data of users is fulfilled by this move. Laypeople find it difficult to guess the issue at an initial stage.

Code signing certificates are used to prevent these mishaps, which preserve code integrity by digitally signing apps and instilling confidence amongst its users.

Guaranties Publisher’s Liability

Being a software publisher, you can be held liable for the security breaches caused by malicious hackers imitating your applications. The same can be prevented by using a code signing certificate that authenticates software and its updates.

This, in turn, guarantees the publisher’s liability in case of any legal controversies.

Increases Brand Reputation

When customers download any application, these certificates show your business name in front of the “Verified Publisher” field, which tends to increase your business reputation.

Boosts Trust & Revenue

A rise in brand reputation and credibility helps boost user trust and, in turn, enhance business revenue.

Prevents Security Warnings

When an application/software is digitally signed with this certificate, all the warning alerts displayed in case of a suspicious application download are eliminated.

Efficiency in Monitoring & Enforcement

When a code is signed digitally, you can detect malicious codes and files. Another advantage is that when the code is timestamped, the user will know about the validity of the code even after the certificate’s expiry date.

Does any Certificate Authority provide Free Code Signing Certificates?

The human mind always prefers cost-free as compared to paid. Be it free lunch, free goodies, free offers, free digital securities, free SSL, or free Code Signing Certificates.

Oops, sorry to disappoint you on this one.

Code Signing Certificates are not available to free of cost.

And let me warn you, beware of entities offering these certificates for free because they may invade your systems and contaminate them with malicious codes. Hence, it’s advisable to refrain from such freebies.

Reliable CAs never offer these certificates for free, but they offer multiple options to buy them.

  • Free Trial Version: Some CAs offer these certificates for free on a limited basis for trial purposes. After the trial period is over, the publisher needs to pay the cost for the same.
  • Free Code Signing Certificate: Beware!! It’s dangerous to trust this CA who is offering the same. Don’t ever approach such authorities.

Cheap Code Signing Certificate Providers

There are various cheap code signing certificate providers in the market, ranging from Comodo, DigiCert, etc. The cheapest ones are available at SSL2BUY, which not only provides SHA-2 encryption but supports multiple platforms like MS Office, Adobe AIR, Mac, Linux OS, etc., and secures .exe, .msi, .dll, etc. formats in 32-bit and 64-bit versions.

  Best Buy
Product Name Comodo Code Signing Certificate Comodo EV Code Signing Certificate DigiCert Code Signing Certificate
$78.00/year
$269.00/year
$425.00/year
 
RSA Key 3072-bit or 4096-bit 3072-bit or 4096-bit 3072-bit or 4096-bit
Encryption SHA-2 SHA-2 SHA-2
Issuance Time 1-3 Business Days 1-5 Business Days 1-3 Business Days
Validation Type Organization Validation Extended Validation Organization Validation
Displays Verified Publisher Name Yes Yes Yes
Instant SmartScreen Reputation No Yes No
Physical USB Token (2FA) No Yes No
Individual Developer Eligibility Yes No No
Microsoft Authenticode Signing Yes Yes Yes
Windows 8 &10 Signing Yes Yes Yes
Windows Vista X64 kernel Mode Signing Yes Yes Yes
Microsoft Office VBA Signing Yes Yes Yes
Apple OS X Signing Yes Yes Yes
Java Signing Yes Yes Yes
Mozilla Signing Yes Yes Yes
Adobe AIR Signing Yes Yes Yes
Microsoft Office 365 Signing Yes Yes Yes
Windows Phone Apps Signing Yes Yes Yes
Brew Code Signing No No Yes
Microsoft Office Document Security Yes Yes Yes
Reissuance Unlimited No Unlimited
Refund Policy 30 Days 100% money back 30 Days 100% money back 30 Days 100% money back
Vendor Price
Now Only

SSL2BUY provide 30-day money-back offers and 24/7 expert support for authenticating codes and enhancing user protection.

Example:

Features of the Comodo Code Signing Certificate are:

  • Provides Integrity of Publisher & Improves Customer
  • Prevents Untrusted Warnings
  • Improves Conversions Rates and Revenue
  • Supports Varied Operating Systems like Windows, Java, etc.
  • Verifies the identity of the publisher
  • Ideal for commercial distribution
  • Quick Issuance in 1-3 days
  • Available in Organization Validation and Extended Validation

Wrapping Up

Certificate Authorities who issue the code signing certificates are extremely cautious while issuing the same. If this certificate lands in the wrong hands, it may cause a disaster by spreading malware in the software. Anyone who tries to download this malicious code may corrupt their system.

Hence, a strong vetting process is implemented before issuing this certificate. This process is expensive, and hence these certificates are never available free of cost.

They cost money, but you can get discounted offers on these certificates at SSL2BUY.

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