Private key infrastructure (PKI)

The use of public key cryptography in which each customer has a key pair (e.g., a unique electronic value called a public key and a mathematically-related private key). The private key is used to encrypt (sign) a message that can only be decrypted by the cor-responding public key or to decrypt a message previously encrypted with the public key. The public key is used to decrypt a message previously encrypted (signed) using an individual’s private key or to encrypt a message so that it can only be decrypted (read) using the intended recipient’s private key.