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Tools / SSL Certificate Interview Questions

What is SSL/TLS Handshake? Explain the steps involved in SSL/TLS Handshake.

The SSL/TLS handshake is a series of steps that allows two parties, typically a client and a server, to authenticate each other, agree on encryption standards, and establish a secure channel for transferring data.

1. Introduction (ClientHello): Your browser sends a "ClientHello" message to the server when you request a secure website. This message contains essential information, including the SSL/TLS versions it supports and the cipher suites it can use.

2. Server's Response (ServerHello): The server replies with a "ServerHello" message, including the highest SSL/TLS version and cipher suite both parties support.

3. Server's Credentials: The server presents its digital certificate, verified by a Certificate Authority (CA) such as, like an ID card providing its authenticity.

4. Client's Verification and Key Generation: Your browser validates the server's certificate. Once verified, it uses the server's public key to encrypt a "premaster secret", a unique session key, and sends it back to the server.

5. Establishing a Secure Connection: The server decrypts the premaster secret with its private key. The server and client then compute the session key, which will be used for symmetric encryption of all communication.

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