The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) has published a public notice asking all foreign Electronic Certification Providers are required to apply for recognition within 30 days. This follows the enactment and operationalization of the Business Laws (Amendment) Act 2020 early this year. The Act, which has a positive impact on the country’s ease of doing business, has led to the following:
- Recognition of electronic signatures, documents and registries
- Reduction of formalities, increasing transparency and protecting businesses
This amendment has brought into sharp focus the role of Electronic Certification Service Providers (E-CSPs) in Kenya.
The Kenya Information and Communications Act, 1998 mandates the Authority to license E-CSPs to issue digital certificates. A digital certificate is a record issued by a Certification Service Provider for the purpose of supporting a digital signature. A digital signature confirms the identity or other significant characteristics of the person who holds a particular key pair; identifies the certification provider issuing it; names or identifies the person to whom it was issued; contains the public key of the person to whom it is issued and signed by a responsible officer of the Certification Service Provider issuing it.
In exercise of its powers, the Authority wants any Foreign Electronic Certification Provider operating in the country to apply for recognition of their services with the Authority within 30 days.