TLS/SSL Synonyms and Misnomers, Brand Name Edition

Scott Rogers

After we started thinking about terms that were used in multiple forms in the TLS/SSL business, in occurred to us that the names themselves could be very confusing.  So here we are with the Brand Name Edition of our synonyms and misnomers discussion.

GeoCerts vs. GeoTrust

We frequently encounter people who confuse GeoCerts with GeoTrust.  Let's clarify.  GeoTrust is a major brand of SSL that was offered originally by the company GeoTrust and then later, through a series of successive acquisitions, by Verisign, Symantec, and now DigiCert.

GeoCerts is one of the world's largest resellers of GeoTrust certificates.  For nearly fifteen years GeoCerts has been owned and operated by the same founding team that originally set out to provide enterprise-grade certificates at reasonable prices and accompanied by first class service.  We still have the same mission.  Though we're still best known for the full line of GeoTrust DV, Organization Validation (OV), Extended Validation (EV), wildcard, multi-domain/SAN, and code signing certificates we provide, we also offer a broad selection of Comodo CA and Symantec certs.

VeriSign vs. Verisign

When the company was founded in 1995 it was called VeriSign.  When VeriSign sold its digital certificate business to Symantec in 2010, it included most of its corporate brand identity (including the original VeriSign check mark, which became Symantec's logo).

Image result for verisign seal

VeriSign logo circa 2009

Symantec logo

Symantec logo circa now

As a consequence VeriSign needed to update its corporate brand, including new colors and a new logo.  When the company did that, it also changed the capitalization of its name from VeriSign to Verisign.  No kidding, this is all for real.

So it's proper to say "Verisign is traded on the NASDAQ" and also to say "In 1996 VeriSign issued the first SSL certificate."

Symantec vs. DigiCert

Late in 2017 DigiCert acquired Symantec's digital certificate business.  As publication time for this blog post these certificates were still referred to as Symantec.  That means when we sell you a Symantec-brand certificate, it is issued by DigiCert, not Symantec.  We refer to these certificates under the Symantec name since that's what they're called.  If we were referring to the parent company, we would say DigiCert.