[Smcwg-public] Same email addresses in S/MIME certs with different, and unaffiliated Subjects

Adriano Santoni adriano.santoni at staff.aruba.it
Thu Sep 21 07:49:47 UTC 2023

Hi all,

there is another aspect about which I have some doubts; I apologize if 
this has already been discussed previously and I missed the discussion.

The same mailbox can very well (nothing prevents it) be accessible by 
two different subjects A and B who have nothing to do with each other 
(that is, are not affiliated). There are valid and understandable 
reasons why this situation occurs, in practice.

But, consequently, if the validation of the mailbox is done with the 
email-based method, S/MIME certificates can be issued which contain the 
same email address but completely different and unaffiliated Subjects 
(respectively A and B).

I understand that this is allowed by the S/MIME BR, if I'm not mistaken, 
and I wonder if this is expected and accepted, or it would be (have 
been) better avoided.....

Any comments welcome!



PS: I am aware that similar situations can also occur with TLS certificates.

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