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Solution ID : SO4264

Last Modified : 05/02/2018

What is a Certificate's Fingerprint

Problem

What is a Certificate's Fingerprint

Solution

A certificate's fingerprint is the unique identifier of the certificate. Microsoft Internet Explorer calls it Thumbprint. Browsers tend to display it as if it were a part of the certificate. It is not a part of the certificate, but it is computed from it.

A fingerprint is the MD5 digest of the der-encoded Certificate Info, which is an ASN.1 type specified as part of the X.509 specification.

The Certificate Fingerprint is a digest (hash function) of a certificate in x509 binary format. It can be calculated by different algorithms, such as SHA1 for Microsoft Internet Explorer, and MD5 for Netscape Navigator.

To check a certificates fingerprint/thumbprint, perform the following steps:

  1. Open Internet Explorer
  2. Go to Tools > Internet Options
  3. Click Content tab > Certificates
  4. In the Certificates window, click on the tab for the certificate you want to examine (Personal, Other People, Intermediate Certification Authorities, Trusted Root Certification Authorities)
  5. Locate the certificate or root in the list
  6. Double click on the entry
  7. Click the Details tab
  8. Scroll to Thumbprint
  9. The Thumbprint details will be displayed