The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has published XML Signature as a W3C Recommendation.
The publication results from joint collaboration between the W3C and the Internet Engineering Task Force to agree an XML-based language for digital signatures.
"By offering basic data integrity and authentication tools, XML Signature provides new power for applications that enable trusted transactions of all sorts," said Tim Berners-Lee, W3C director.
The W3C said the specification is stable and contributes to web interoperability, and has been reviewed by the W3C membership who favour its widespread adoption.
Digital signatures mark a piece of information so that recipients can be sure of the identity of the signatory and the integrity of the information. This capability is important to a growing number of XML protocol, publishing and commerce applications.
The benefit of XML Signature lies in the fact that multiple users can apply signatures to sections of XML, not just the whole document.
This means that when XML documents, such as invoices and orders, are sent through a series of intermediaries, sections of a document can be signed by multiple individuals without invalidating other portions of the document.
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