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Enhancing PKCS #11 standard for cryptographic tokens controlling authentication information (personal identity, cryptographic keys, certificates, digital signatures, biometric data)

Robert Griffin, robert.griffin@rsa.com, Chair
Valerie Fenwick, valerie.fenwick@oracle.com, Chair

Table of Contents


Participation in the OASIS PKCS 11 TC is open to all interested parties. Contact join@oasis-open.org for more information.


The OASIS PKCS 11 Technical Committee develops enhancements to improve the PKCS #11 standard for ease of use in code libraries, open source applications, wrappers, and enterprise/COTS products: implementation guidelines, usage tutorials, test scenarios and test suites, interoperability testing, coordination of functional testing, development of conformance profiles, and providing reference implementations.

The updated standard provides additional support for mobile and cloud computing use cases: for distributed/federated applications involving key management functions (key generation, distribution, translation, escrow, re-keying); session-based models; virtual devices and virtual keystores; evolving wireless/sensor applications using near field communication (NFC), RFID, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi.

TC members are also designing new mechanisms for API instrumentation, suitable for use in prototyping, profiling, and testing in resource-constrained application environments. These updates enable support for easy integration of PKCS #11 with other cryptographic key management system (CKMS) standards, including a broader range of cryptographic algorithms and CKMS cryptographic service models.

For more information on the PKCS 11 TC, see the TC Charter.


No subcommittees have been formed for this TC.

TC Liaisons

Tim Hudson (Cryptsoft) has been appointed by the PKCS 11 TC as liaison to the OASIS KMIP TC.

Technical Work Produced by the Committee

Wiki for OASIS PKCS 11 TC member collaboration

This Technical Committee has not produced any final technical work, yet. However, the PKCS #11 V2.30 principal input specification referenced in the TC Charter was contributed on 2013-03-04.

PKCS #11 V2.40

The latest documents for PKCS #11 V2.40 are in "Committee Specification" status, and have completed their public review of their drafts in the summer of 2014. The documents are now in Committee Specification status and approaching final public review as of December 2014. This draft builds on the foundation of PKCS #11 V2.30, and is backwards compatible to PKCS #11 V2.20.

Expository Work Produced by the Committee

There are no approved expository work products for this TC yet.

External Resources

External resources have not yet been identified.

Mailing Lists and Comments

pkcs11: the discussion list used by TC members to conduct Committee work. TC membership is required to post, and TC members are automatically subscribed. The public may view the list archives.

pkcs11-comment: a public mailing list for providing feedback on the technical work of the OASIS PKCS 11 TC. Send a comment or view the comment list archives.

Press Coverage and Commentary

Eleven Companies Demo Interoperability for KMIP and PKCS #11 OASIS Standards at RSA Conference 2014: Cryptosense, Cryptsoft, Dell, Feitian, HP, IBM, P6R, Oracle, SafeNet, Thales e-Security, and Vormetric Show Support for Key Management and Cryptographic Token Interface Standards; 24 Feb 2014

"OASIS Enhances Popular Public-Key Cryptography Standard, PKCS #11, for Mobile and Cloud", 26 March 2013

Additional Information

Providing Feedback: OASIS welcomes feedback on its technical activities from potential users, developers, and others to better assure the interoperability and quality of OASIS work.