Does anyone know about security certificates and encrypted files?

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syc0path

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Nov 19, 2004
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I work w/ sensitive datasets from the federal government. We got the data for 2010 a few months ago, and I haven't been able to open any of the files. The IT guy from this gov agency is not very helpful or responsive to my calls and emails, but 1 of the few times I actually talked to him, he gave me a set of steps to follow to open the files. I followed them, and this is what happened:

1) Right-clicked on data file (which is named something like "LT2010.ZIP.bin")
2) Selected PKZIP/Extract files here (PKZip is a zip program he told me to use)
3) Got message that security certificate is not trusted
4) Entered file password at prompt
5) A file named "LT" was generated, with no file extension
6) Got message that security certificate is not trusted
7) Opened Kirix Strata (another program he told me to use -- I'm not sure what it does, but he said something about converting it from some character coding to ASCII)
8) Went to File\Import and selected the LT file
9) Selected Comma as a Field Delimiter and clicked "Next"
10) "LT" showed up in the Project tab on the left side of the Kirix Strata program
11) Selected LT, and it is blank in the KS browser window

He said that the fact that I’m getting an error that the security certificate is not trusted is a clue to the problems that I’m having. He believes the issue is due to the fact that our systems don’t recognize the certificate that they use to authenticate the files. He was surprised and indicated that this is a widely-used encryption technique throughout government agencies. However, I've obtained a fair amount of sensitive data from the government thru my job, and I've never experienced any issues like this. Frankly, I don't know enough about it to know if it's plausible or if he's just telling me something to get me off his back. Any thoughts or suggestions?
 

Cookiegal

Karen
Administrator
Malware Specialist Coordinator
Joined
Aug 27, 2003
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120,074
I'm sorry but since you're talking about sensitive government data this is something that we will not get involved with for obvious reasons.

Closing thread.
 
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