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325K.05 Licensure and qualifications of certification authorities.

Subdivision 1. License conditions. To obtain or retain a license, a certification authority must:

(1) be the subscriber of a certificate published in a recognized repository;

(2) employ as operative personnel only persons who have not been convicted within the past 15 years of a felony or a crime involving fraud, false statement, or deception;

(3) employ as operative personnel only persons who have demonstrated knowledge and proficiency in following the requirements of this chapter;

(4) file with the secretary a suitable guaranty, unless the certification authority is a department, office, or official of a state, city, or county governmental entity, provided that:

(i) each of these public entities act through designated officials authorized by rule or ordinance to perform certification authority functions; or

(ii) one of these public entities is the subscriber of all certificates issued by the certification authority;

(5) have the right to use a trustworthy system, including a secure means for limiting access to its private key;

(6) present proof to the secretary of having working capital reasonably sufficient, according to rules adopted by the secretary, to enable the applicant to conduct business as a certification authority;

(7) maintain an office in this state or have established a registered agent for service of process in this state; and

(8) comply with all further licensing requirements established by rule by the secretary.

Subd. 2. License procedures. The secretary must issue a license to a certification authority that:

(1) is qualified under subdivision 1;

(2) applies in writing to the secretary for a license; and

(3) pays a filing fee adopted by rule by the secretary.

Subd. 3. Rules. The secretary may by rule classify licenses according to specified limitations, such as a maximum number of outstanding certificates, cumulative maximum of recommended reliance limits in certificates issued by the certification authority, or issuance only within a single firm or organization, and the secretary may issue licenses restricted according to the limits of each classification. A certification authority acts as an unlicensed certification authority in issuing a certificate exceeding the restrictions of the certification authority's license.

Subd. 4. Revocation or suspension. The secretary may revoke or suspend a certification authority's license, in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act, chapter 14, for failure to comply with this chapter or for failure to remain qualified under subdivision 1.

Subd. 5. Local authorities. The secretary may recognize by rule the licensing or authorization of certification authorities by local, metropolitan, or regional governmental entities, provided that those licensing or authorization requirements are substantially similar to those of this state. If licensing by another governmental entity is so recognized:

(1) sections 325K.19 to 325K.24 apply to certificates issued by the certification authorities licensed or authorized by that governmental entity in the same manner as it applies to licensed certification authorities of this state; and

(2) the liability limits of section 325K.17 apply to the certification authorities licensed or authorized by that governmental entity in the same manner as they apply to licensed certification authorities of this state.

Subd. 6. Applicability to digital signatures. Unless the parties provide otherwise by contract between themselves, the licensing requirements in this section do not affect the effectiveness, enforceability, or validity of any digital signature, except that sections 325K.19 to 325K.24 do not apply in relation to a digital signature that cannot be verified by a certificate issued by an unlicensed certification authority.

Subd. 7. Nonapplicability. A certification authority that has not obtained a license is not subject to the provision of this chapter.

HIST: 1997 c 178 s 6

Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes