Thawte Web Of Trust

The Thawte Web of Trust system ( is a certification system allowing two people to be sure of each other's identity, even if they've never met.

In order for Thawte to certify your identity, you obtain at least 50 notarization points by meeting notaries and showing them officially-issued photographic identification; each notary can provide a maximum of 35 points. Once you have 100 points, you become a notary yourself, initially able to issue up to 10 points. The number of points you may issue increases with the number of notarizations you perform.

If you live in a zone where there are no notaries nearby, you will have to be notarized by a Thawte staff member. From time to time, a number of staff travel to various countries and conduct `roadshows'; alternatively, if a roadshow is not being held in your area, you may request a trusted-third-party (TTP) notarization, which currently costs US$25. Both of these methods will get you 100 points.

Notaries may optionally charge for notarizations, though many do not. Some notaries enjoy setting up notarization meetings, where a group of notaries can notarize a larger number of candidates over a meal and coffee; this is usually a good compensation for transportation costs and the like, for notaries who do not accept payment.

If you're a Thawte Web of Trust notary, please feel free to put your name on this list, along with a URL if you have one. This isn't a substitute for Thawte's notary directory, it's just a way of seeing if any wiki regulars are notaries.


While I like the idea, this seems very vulnerable to corruption. The web page did not address revocation, and a group of as few as five people can establish a self-contained "cell" that could easily fake verifications. -- PeteHardie

View edit of January 23, 2003 or FindPage with title or text search