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Service Identity in TLS
RFC 9525

Document Type RFC - Proposed Standard (November 2023)
Obsoletes RFC 6125
Authors Peter Saint-Andre , Rich Salz
Last updated 2023-11-08
RFC stream Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)
Additional resources Mailing list discussion
IESG Responsible AD Paul Wouters
Send notices to (None)
RFC 9525

Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)                    P. Saint-Andre
Request for Comments: 9525                                   Independent
Obsoletes: 6125                                                  R. Salz
Category: Standards Track                            Akamai Technologies
ISSN: 2070-1721                                            November 2023

                        Service Identity in TLS


   Many application technologies enable secure communication between two
   entities by means of Transport Layer Security (TLS) with Internet
   Public Key Infrastructure using X.509 (PKIX) certificates.  This
   document specifies procedures for representing and verifying the
   identity of application services in such interactions.

   This document obsoletes RFC 6125.

Status of This Memo

   This is an Internet Standards Track document.

   This document is a product of the Internet Engineering Task Force
   (IETF).  It represents the consensus of the IETF community.  It has
   received public review and has been approved for publication by the
   Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG).  Further information on
   Internet Standards is available in Section 2 of RFC 7841.

   Information about the current status of this document, any errata,
   and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2023 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   ( in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must
   include Revised BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of the
   Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as described
   in the Revised BSD License.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction
     1.1.  Motivation
     1.2.  Applicability
     1.3.  Overview of Recommendations
     1.4.  Scope
       1.4.1.  In Scope
       1.4.2.  Out of Scope
     1.5.  Terminology
   2.  Identifying Application Services
   3.  Designing Application Protocols
   4.  Representing Server Identity
     4.1.  Rules
     4.2.  Examples
   5.  Requesting Server Certificates
   6.  Verifying Service Identity
     6.1.  Constructing a List of Reference Identifiers
       6.1.1.  Rules
       6.1.2.  Examples
     6.2.  Preparing to Seek a Match
     6.3.  Matching the DNS Domain Name Portion
     6.4.  Matching an IP Address Portion
     6.5.  Matching the Application Service Type Portion
     6.6.  Outcome
   7.  Security Considerations
     7.1.  Wildcard Certificates
     7.2.  Uniform Resource Identifiers
     7.3.  Internationalized Domain Names
     7.4.  IP Addresses
     7.5.  Multiple Presented Identifiers
     7.6.  Multiple Reference Identifiers
     7.7.  Certificate Trust
   8.  IANA Considerations
   9.  References
     9.1.  Normative References
     9.2.  Informative References
   Appendix A.  Changes from RFC 6125
   Authors' Addresses

1.  Introduction

1.1.  Motivation

   The visible face of the Internet largely consists of services that
   employ a client-server architecture in which a client communicates
   with an application service.  When a client communicates with an
   application service using [TLS], [DTLS], or a protocol built on those
   ([QUIC] being a notable example), it has some notion of the server's
   identity (e.g., "the website at bigcompany.example") while attempting
   to establish secure communication.  Likewise, during TLS negotiation,
   the server presents its notion of the service's identity in the form
   of a public key certificate that was issued by a certification
   authority (CA) in the context of the Internet Public Key
   Infrastructure using X.509 [PKIX].  Informally, we can think of these
   identities as the client's "reference identity" and the server's
   "presented identity"; more formal definitions are given later.  A
   client needs to verify that the server's presented identity matches
   its reference identity so it can deterministically and automatically
   authenticate the communication.

   This document defines procedures for how clients perform this
   verification.  It therefore defines requirements on other parties,
   such as the certification authorities that issue certificates, the
   service administrators requesting them, and the protocol designers
   defining interactions between clients and servers.

   This document obsoletes RFC 6125 [VERIFY].  Changes from RFC 6125
   [VERIFY] are described under Appendix A.

1.2.  Applicability

   This document does not supersede the rules for certificate issuance
   or validation specified by [PKIX].  That document also governs any
   certificate-related topic on which this document is silent.  This
   includes certificate syntax, extensions such as name constraints or
   extended key usage, and handling of certification paths.

   This document addresses only name forms in the leaf "end entity"
   server certificate.  It does not address the name forms in the chain
   of certificates used to validate a certificate, nor does it create or
   check the validity of such a chain.  In order to ensure proper
   authentication, applications need to verify the entire certification

1.3.  Overview of Recommendations

   The previous version of this specification, [VERIFY], surveyed the
   then-current practice from many IETF standards and tried to
   generalize best practices (see Appendix A of [VERIFY] for details).

   This document takes the lessons learned since then and codifies them.
   The following is a summary of the rules, which are described at
   greater length in the remainder of this document:

   *  Only check DNS domain names via the subjectAltName extension
      designed for that purpose: dNSName.

   *  Allow use of even more specific subjectAltName extensions where
      appropriate such as uniformResourceIdentifier, iPAddress, and the
      otherName form SRVName.

   *  Wildcard support is now the default in certificates.  Constrain
      wildcard certificates so that the wildcard can only be the
      complete left-most label of a domain name.

   *  Do not include or check strings that look like domain names in the
      subject's Common Name.

1.4.  Scope

1.4.1.  In Scope

   This document applies only to service identities that are used in TLS
   or DTLS and that are included in PKIX certificates.

   With regard to TLS and DTLS, these security protocols are used to
   protect data exchanged over a wide variety of application protocols,
   which use both the TLS or DTLS handshake protocol and the TLS or DTLS
   record layer, either directly or through a profile as in Network Time
   Security [NTS].  The TLS handshake protocol can also be used with
   different record layers to define secure transport protocols; at
   present, the most prominent example is QUIC [RFC9000].  The rules
   specified here are intended to apply to all protocols in this
   extended TLS "family".

   With regard to PKIX certificates, the primary usage is in the context
   of the public key infrastructure described in [PKIX].  In addition,
   technologies such as DNS-Based Authentication of Named Entities
   (DANE) [DANE] sometimes use certificates based on PKIX (more
   precisely, certificates structured via [X.509] or specific encodings
   thereof such as [X.690]), at least in certain modes.  Alternatively,
   a TLS peer could issue delegated credentials that are based on a CA-
   issued certificate, as in [TLS-SUBCERTS].  In both cases, a TLS
   client could learn of a service identity through its inclusion in the
   relevant certificate.  The rules specified here are intended to apply
   whenever service identities are included in X.509 certificates or
   credentials that are derived from such certificates.

1.4.2.  Out of Scope

   The following topics are out of scope for this specification:

   *  Security protocols other than those described above.

   *  Keys or certificates employed outside the context of PKIX-based

   *  Client or end-user identities.  Other than as described above,
      certificates representing client identities (e.g., rfc822Name) are
      beyond the scope of this document.

   *  Identification of servers using other than a domain name, an IP
      address, or an SRV service name.  This document discusses Uniform
      Resource Identifiers [URI] only to the extent that they are
      expressed in certificates.  Other aspects of a service such as a
      specific resource (the URI "path" component) or parameters (the
      URI "query" component) are the responsibility of specific
      protocols or URI schemes.

   *  Certification authority policies.  This includes items such as the

      -  How to certify or validate fully qualified domain names (FQDNs)
         and application service types (see [ACME]).

      -  What types or "classes" of certificates to issue and whether to
         apply different policies for them.

      -  How to certify or validate other kinds of information that
         might be included in a certificate (e.g., organization name).

   *  Resolution of DNS domain names.  Although the process whereby a
      client resolves the DNS domain name of an application service can
      involve several steps, for the purposes of this specification, the
      only relevant consideration is that the client needs to verify the
      identity of the entity with which it will communicate once the
      resolution process is complete.  Thus, the resolution process
      itself is out of scope for this specification.

   *  User interface issues.  In general, such issues are properly the
      responsibility of client software developers and standards
      development organizations dedicated to particular application
      technologies (for example, see [WSC-UI]).

1.5.  Terminology

   Because many concepts related to "identity" are often too vague to be
   actionable in application protocols, we define a set of more concrete
   terms for use in this specification.

   application service:  A service on the Internet that enables clients
      to connect for the purpose of retrieving or uploading information,
      communicating with other entities, or connecting to a broader
      network of services.

   application service provider:  An entity that hosts or deploys an
      application service.

   application service type:  A formal identifier for the application
      protocol used to provide a particular kind of application service
      at a domain.  This often appears as a URI scheme [URI], a DNS SRV
      Service [DNS-SRV], or an Application-Layer Protocol Negotiation
      (ALPN) [ALPN] identifier.

   identifier:  A particular instance of an identifier type that is
      either presented by a server in a certificate or referenced by a
      client for matching purposes.

   identifier type:  A formally defined category of identifier that can
      be included in a certificate and therefore be used for matching
      purposes.  For conciseness and convenience, we define the
      following identifier types of interest:

      DNS-ID:  A subjectAltName entry of type dNSName as defined in

      IP-ID:  A subjectAltName entry of type iPAddress as defined in

      SRV-ID:  A subjectAltName entry of type otherName whose name form
         is SRVName as defined in [SRVNAME].

      URI-ID:  A subjectAltName entry of type uniformResourceIdentifier
         as defined in [PKIX].  See further discussion in Section 7.2.

   PKIX:  The short name for the Internet Public Key Infrastructure
      using X.509 defined in [PKIX].  That document provides a profile
      of the X.509v3 certificate specifications and X.509v2 certificate
      revocation list (CRL) specifications for use on the Internet.

   presented identifier:  An identifier presented by a server to a
      client within a PKIX certificate when the client attempts to
      establish secure communication with the server.  The certificate
      can include one or more presented identifiers of different types,
      and if the server hosts more than one domain, then the certificate
      might present distinct identifiers for each domain.

   reference identifier:  An identifier expected by the client when
      examining presented identifiers.  It is constructed from the
      source domain and, optionally, an application service type.

   Relative Distinguished Name (RDN):  An ASN.1-based construction that
      is itself a building-block component of Distinguished Names.  See
      [LDAP-DN], Section 2.

   source domain:  The FQDN that a client expects an application service
      to present in the certificate.  This is typically input by a human
      user, configured into a client, or provided by reference such as a
      URL.  The combination of a source domain and, optionally, an
      application service type enables a client to construct one or more
      reference identifiers.  This specification covers FQDNs.  Use of
      any names that are not fully qualified is out of scope and may
      result in unexpected or undefined behavior.

   subjectAltName entry:  An identifier placed in a subjectAltName

   subjectAltName extension:  A standard PKIX extension enabling
      identifiers of various types to be bound to the certificate

   subjectName:  The name of a PKIX certificate's subject, encoded in a
      certificate's subject field (see [PKIX], Section

   TLS uses the words "client" and "server", where the client is the
   entity that initiates the connection.  In many cases, this is
   consistent with common practice, such as a browser connecting to a
   web origin.  For the sake of clarity, and to follow the usage in
   [TLS] and related specifications, we will continue to use the terms
   client and server in this document.  However, these are TLS-layer
   roles, and the application protocol could support the TLS server
   making requests to the TLS client after the TLS handshake; there is
   no requirement that the roles at the application layer match the TLS

   Security-related terms used in this document, but not defined here or
   in [PKIX], should be understood in the sense defined in [SECTERMS].
   Such terms include "attack", "authentication", "identity", "trust",
   "validate", and "verify".

   The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
   "OPTIONAL" in this document are to be interpreted as described in BCP
   14 [RFC2119] [RFC8174] when, and only when, they appear in all
   capitals, as shown here.

2.  Identifying Application Services

   This document assumes that an application service is identified by a
   DNS domain name (e.g., bigcompany.example), an IP address (IPv4 or
   IPv6), or an identifier that contains additional supplementary
   information.  Supplementary information is limited to the application
   service type as expressed in a DNS SRV record (e.g., "the IMAP server
   at isp.example" for "_imap.isp.example") or a URI.

   In a DNS-ID -- and in the DNS domain name portion of an SRV-ID or
   URI-ID -- any characters outside the range described in [US-ASCII]
   are prohibited, and internationalized domain labels are represented
   as A-labels [IDNA-DEFS].

   An IP address is either a 4-octet IPv4 address [IPv4] or a 16-octet
   IPv6 address [IPv6].  The identifier might need to be converted from
   a textual representation to obtain this value.

   From the perspective of the application client or user, some
   identifiers are _direct_ because they are provided directly by a
   human user.  This includes runtime input, prior configuration, or
   explicit acceptance of a client communication attempt.  Other names
   are _indirect_ because they are automatically resolved by the
   application based on user input, such as a target name resolved from
   a source name using DNS SRV or the records described in [NAPTR].  The
   distinction matters most for certificate consumption, specifically
   verification as discussed in this document.

   From the perspective of the application service, some identifiers are
   _unrestricted_ because they can be used in any type of service, such
   as a single certificate being used for both the HTTP and IMAP
   services at the host "bigcompany.example".  Other identifiers are
   _restricted_ because they can only be used for one type of service,
   such as a special-purpose certificate that can only be used for an
   IMAP service.  This distinction matters most for certificate

   The four identifier types can be categorized as follows:

   *  A DNS-ID is direct and unrestricted.

   *  An IP-ID is direct and unrestricted.

   *  An SRV-ID is typically indirect but can be direct, and it is

   *  A URI-ID is direct and restricted.

   It is important to keep these distinctions in mind because best
   practices for the deployment and use of the identifiers differ.  Note
   that cross-protocol attacks such as those described in [ALPACA] are
   possible when two different protocol services use the same
   certificate.  This can be addressed by using restricted identifiers
   or deploying services so that they do not share certificates.
   Protocol specifications MUST specify which identifiers are mandatory
   to implement and SHOULD provide operational guidance when necessary.

   The Common Name RDN MUST NOT be used to identify a service because it
   is not strongly typed (it is essentially free-form text) and
   therefore suffers from ambiguities in interpretation.

   For similar reasons, other RDNs within the subjectName MUST NOT be
   used to identify a service.

   An IP address that is the result of a DNS query is indirect.  Use of
   IP-IDs that are indirect is out of scope for this document.

   The IETF continues to define methods for looking up information
   needed to make connections to network services.  One recent example
   is service binding via the "SVCB" and "HTTPS" DNS resource record
   (RR) types.  This document does not define any identity
   representation or verification procedures that are specific to SVCB-
   compatible records, because the use of such records during connection
   establishment does not currently alter any of the PKIX validation
   requirements specified herein or in any other relevant specification.
   For example, the PKIX validation rules for [HTTP] and [DNS-OVER-TLS]
   do not change when the client uses the DNS resource records defined
   in [SVCB-FOR-HTTPS] or [SVCB-FOR-DNS] to look up connection
   information.  However, it is possible that future SVCB mapping
   documents could specify altered PKIX rules for new use cases.

3.  Designing Application Protocols

   This section defines how protocol designers should reference this
   document, which would typically be a normative reference in their

   A specification MAY choose to allow only one of the identifier types
   defined here.

   If the technology does not use DNS SRV records to resolve the DNS
   domain names of application services, then the specification MUST
   state that SRV-ID as defined in this document is not supported.  Note
   that many existing application technologies use DNS SRV records to
   resolve the DNS domain names of application services, but they do not
   rely on representations of those records in PKIX certificates by
   means of SRV-IDs as defined in [SRVNAME].

   If the technology does not use URIs to identify application services,
   then the specification MUST state that URI-ID as defined in this
   document is not supported.  Note that many existing application
   technologies use URIs to identify application services, but they do
   not rely on representation of those URIs in PKIX certificates by
   means of URI-IDs.

   A technology MAY disallow the use of the wildcard character in
   presented identifiers.  If it does so, then the specification MUST
   state that wildcard certificates as defined in this document are not

   A protocol can allow the use of an IP address in place of a DNS name.
   This might use the same field without distinguishing the type of
   identifier as, for example, in the "host" components of a URI.  In
   this case, applications need to be aware that the textual
   representation of an IPv4 address is a valid DNS name.  The two types
   can be distinguished by first testing if the identifier is a valid
   IPv4 address, as is done by the "first-match-wins" algorithm in
   Section 3.2.2 of [URI].

4.  Representing Server Identity

   This section provides instructions for issuers of certificates.

4.1.  Rules

   When a certification authority issues a certificate based on the FQDN
   at which the application service provider will provide the relevant
   application, the following rules apply to the representation of
   application service identities.  Note that some of these rules are
   cumulative and can interact in important ways that are illustrated
   later in this document.

   1.  The certificate MUST include at least one identifier.

   2.  The certificate SHOULD include a DNS-ID as a baseline for
       interoperability.  This is not mandatory because it is legitimate
       for a certificate to include only an SRV-ID or URI-ID so as to
       scope its use to a particular application type.

   3.  If the service using the certificate deploys a technology for
       which the relevant specification stipulates that certificates
       should include identifiers of type SRV-ID (e.g., this is true of
       the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP) as
       described in [XMPP]), then the certificate SHOULD include an SRV-
       ID.  This identifier type could supplement the DNS-ID, unless the
       certificate is meant to be scoped to only the protocol in

   4.  If the service using the certificate deploys a technology for
       which the relevant specification stipulates that certificates
       should include identifiers of type URI-ID (e.g., this is true of
       the Session Initiation Protocol [SIP] as specified by
       [SIP-CERTS]), then the certificate SHOULD include a URI-ID.  The
       scheme MUST be that of the protocol associated with the
       application service type, and the "host" component MUST be the
       FQDN of the service.  The application protocol specification MUST
       specify which URI schemes are acceptable in URI-IDs contained in
       PKIX certificates used for the application protocol (e.g., sip
       but not sips or tel for SIP as described in [SIP-SIPS]).
       Typically, this identifier type would supplement the DNS-ID,
       unless the certificate is meant to be scoped to only the protocol
       in question.

   5.  The certificate MAY contain more than one DNS-ID, SRV-ID, URI-ID,
       or IP-ID as further explained in Section 7.5.

   6.  The certificate MAY include other application-specific
       identifiers for compatibility with a deployed base, especially
       identifiers for types that were defined before publication of
       [SRVNAME] or for which SRV service names or URI schemes do not
       exist.  Such identifiers are out of scope for this specification.

4.2.  Examples

   Consider a simple website at <www.bigcompany.example>, which is not
   discoverable via DNS SRV lookups.  Because HTTP does not specify the
   use of URIs in server certificates, a certificate for this service
   might include only a DNS-ID of <www.bigcompany.example>.

   Consider another website, which is reachable by a fixed IP address of
   2001:db8::5c.  If the two sites refer to the same web service, then
   the certificate might also include this value in an IP-ID to allow
   clients to use the fixed IP address as a reference identity.

   Consider an IMAP-accessible email server at the host mail.isp.example
   servicing email addresses of the form user@isp.example and
   discoverable via DNS SRV lookups on the application service name of
   isp.example.  A certificate for this service might include SRV-IDs of
   _imap.isp.example and _imaps.isp.example (see [EMAIL-SRV]) along with
   DNS-IDs of isp.example and mail.isp.example.

   Consider a SIP-accessible voice-over-IP (VoIP) server at the host servicing SIP addresses of the form and identified by a URI of
   <>.  A certificate for this service would
   include a URI-ID of <> (see [SIP-CERTS])
   along with a DNS-ID of

   Consider an XMPP-compatible instant messaging (IM) server at the host
   messenger.example that services IM addresses of the form
   user@messenger.example and that is discoverable via DNS SRV lookups
   on the messenger.example domain.  A certificate for this service
   might include SRV-IDs of _xmpp-client.messenger.example and _xmpp-
   server.messenger.example (see [XMPP]), as well as a DNS-ID of

5.  Requesting Server Certificates

   This section provides instructions for service providers regarding
   the information to include in certificate signing requests (CSRs).
   In general, service providers SHOULD request certificates that
   include all the identifier types that are required or recommended for
   the application service type that will be secured using the
   certificate to be issued.

   A service provider SHOULD request certificates with as few
   identifiers as necessary to identify a single service; see
   Section 7.5.

   If the certificate will be used for only a single type of application
   service, the service provider SHOULD request a certificate that
   includes DNS-ID or IP-ID values that identify that service or, if
   appropriate for the application service type, SRV-ID or URI-ID values
   that limit the deployment scope of the certificate to only the
   defined application service type.

   If the certificate might be used for any type of application service,
   the service provider SHOULD request a certificate that includes only
   DNS-IDs or IP-IDs.  Again, because of multiprotocol attacks, this
   practice is discouraged; it can be mitigated by deploying only one
   service on a host.

   If a service provider offers multiple application service types and
   wishes to limit the applicability of certificates using SRV-IDs or
   URI-IDs, it SHOULD request that multiple certificates rather than a
   single certificate containing multiple SRV-IDs or URI-IDs each
   identify a different application service type.  This rule does not
   apply to application service type "bundles" that identify distinct
   access methods to the same underlying application such as an email
   application with access methods denoted by the application service
   types of imap, imaps, pop3, pop3s, and submission as described in

6.  Verifying Service Identity

   At a high level, the client verifies the application service's
   identity by performing the following actions:

   1.  The client constructs a list of reference identifiers it would
       find acceptable based on the source domain and, if applicable,
       the type of service to which the client is connecting.

   2.  The server provides its presented identifiers in the form of a
       PKIX certificate.

   3.  The client checks each of its reference identifiers against the
       server's presented identifiers for the purpose of finding a
       match.  When checking a reference identifier against a presented
       identifier, the client matches the source domain of the
       identifiers and, optionally, their application service type.

   Naturally, in addition to checking identifiers, a client should
   perform further checks, such as expiration and revocation, to ensure
   that the server is authorized to provide the requested service.
   Because such checking is not a matter of verifying the application
   service identity presented in a certificate, methods for doing so are
   out of scope for this document.

6.1.  Constructing a List of Reference Identifiers

6.1.1.  Rules

   The client MUST construct a list of acceptable reference identifiers
   and MUST do so independently of the identifiers presented by the

   The inputs used by the client to construct its list of reference
   identifiers might be a URI that a user has typed into an interface
   (e.g., an HTTPS URL for a website), configured account information
   (e.g., the domain name of a host for retrieving email, which might be
   different from the DNS domain name portion of a username), a
   hyperlink in a web page that triggers a browser to retrieve a media
   object or script, or some other combination of information that can
   yield a source domain and an application service type.

   This document does not precisely define how reference identifiers are
   generated.  Defining reference identifiers is the responsibility of
   applications or protocols that use this document.  Because the
   security of a system that uses this document will depend on how
   reference identifiers are generated, great care should be taken in
   this process.  For example, a protocol or application could specify
   that the application service type is obtained through a one-to-one
   mapping of URI schemes to service types or that the protocol or
   application supports only a restricted set of URI schemes.
   Similarly, it could specify that a domain name or an IP address taken
   as input to the reference identifier must be obtained in a secure
   context such as a hyperlink embedded in a web page that was delivered
   over an authenticated and encrypted channel (for instance, see
   [SECURE-CONTEXTS] with regard to the web platform).

   Naturally, if the inputs themselves are invalid or corrupt (e.g., a
   user has clicked a hyperlink provided by a malicious entity in a
   phishing attack), then the client might end up communicating with an
   unexpected application service.

   During the course of processing, a client might be exposed to
   identifiers that look like, but are not, reference identifiers.  For
   example, DNS resolution that starts at a DNS-ID reference identifier
   might produce intermediate domain names that need to be further
   resolved.  Unless an application defines a process for authenticating
   intermediate identifiers in a way that then allows them to be used as
   a reference identifier (for example, see [SMTP-TLS]), any
   intermediate values are not reference identifiers and MUST NOT be
   treated as such.  In the DNS case, not treating intermediate domain
   names as reference identifiers removes DNS and DNS resolution from
   the attack surface.

   As one example of the process of generating a reference identifier,
   from the user input of the URI <>, a
   client could derive the application service type sip from the URI
   scheme and parse the domain name college.example from the "host"

   Using the combination of one or more FQDNs or IP addresses, plus
   optionally an application service type, the client MUST construct its
   list of reference identifiers in accordance with the following rules:

   *  If a server for the application service type is typically
      associated with a URI for security purposes (i.e., a formal
      protocol document specifies the use of URIs in server
      certificates), the reference identifier SHOULD be a URI-ID.

   *  If a server for the application service type is typically
      discovered by means of DNS SRV records, the reference identifier
      SHOULD be an SRV-ID.

   *  If the reference identifier is an IP address, the reference
      identifier is an IP-ID.

   *  In the absence of more specific identifiers, the reference
      identifier is a DNS-ID.  A reference identifier of type DNS-ID can
      be directly constructed from an FQDN that is (a) contained in or
      securely derived from the inputs or (b) explicitly associated with
      the source domain by means of user configuration.

   Which identifier types a client includes in its list of reference
   identifiers, and their priority, is a matter of local policy.  For
   example, a client that is built to connect only to a particular kind
   of service might be configured to accept as valid only certificates
   that include an SRV-ID for that application service type.  By
   contrast, a more lenient client, even if built to connect only to a
   particular kind of service, might include SRV-IDs, DNS-IDs, and IP-
   IDs in its list of reference identifiers.

6.1.2.  Examples

   The following examples are for illustrative purposes only and are not
   intended to be comprehensive.

   1.  A web browser that is connecting via HTTPS to the website at
       <https://www.bigcompany.example/> would have a single reference
       identifier: a DNS-ID of www.bigcompany.example.

   2.  A web browser connecting to <> would have a
       single IP-ID reference identifier of  Likewise, if
       connecting to <https://[2001:db8::abcd]>, it would have a single
       IP-ID reference identifier of 2001:db8::abcd.

   3.  A mail user agent that is connecting via IMAPS to the email
       service at isp.example (resolved as mail.isp.example) might have
       three reference identifiers: an SRV-ID of _imaps.isp.example (see
       [EMAIL-SRV]) and DNS-IDs of isp.example and mail.isp.example.  An
       email user agent that does not support [EMAIL-SRV] would probably
       be explicitly configured to connect to mail.isp.example, whereas
       an SRV-aware user agent would derive isp.example from an email
       address of the form user@isp.example but might also accept
       mail.isp.example as the DNS domain name portion of reference
       identifiers for the service.

   4.  A VoIP user agent that is connecting via SIP to the voice service
       at might have only one reference
       identifier: a URI-ID of (see

   5.  An IM client that is connecting via XMPP to the IM service at
       messenger.example might have three reference identifiers: an SRV-
       ID of _xmpp-client.messenger.example (see [XMPP]), a DNS-ID of
       messenger.example, and an XMPP-specific XmppAddr of
       messenger.example (see [XMPP]).

   In all these cases, presented identifiers that do not match the
   reference identifier(s) would be rejected; for instance:

   *  With regard to the first example, a DNS-ID of
      web.bigcompany.example would be rejected because the DNS domain
      name portion does not match www.bigcompany.example.

   *  With regard to the third example, a URI-ID of
      <> would be rejected because the DNS domain
      name portion does not match "", and a DNS-ID
      of "" would be rejected because it lacks the
      appropriate application service type portion (i.e., it does not
      specify a "sip:" URI).

6.2.  Preparing to Seek a Match

   Once the client has constructed its list of reference identifiers and
   has received the server's presented identifiers, the client checks
   its reference identifiers against the presented identifiers for the
   purpose of finding a match.  The search fails if the client exhausts
   its list of reference identifiers without finding a match.  The
   search succeeds if any presented identifier matches one of the
   reference identifiers, at which point the client SHOULD stop the

   Before applying the comparison rules provided in the following
   sections, the client might need to split the reference identifier
   into components.  Each reference identifier produces either a domain
   name or an IP address and optionally an application service type as

   *  A DNS-ID reference identifier MUST be used directly as the DNS
      domain name, and there is no application service type.

   *  An IP-ID reference identifier MUST exactly match the value of an
      iPAddress entry in subjectAltName, with no partial (e.g., network-
      level) matching.  There is no application service type.

   *  For an SRV-ID reference identifier, the DNS domain name portion is
      the Name and the application service type portion is the Service.
      For example, an SRV-ID of _imaps.isp.example has a DNS domain name
      portion of isp.example and an application service type portion of
      imaps, which maps to the IMAP application protocol as explained in

   *  For a reference identifier of type URI-ID, the DNS domain name
      portion is the "reg-name" part of the "host" component and the
      application service type portion is the scheme, as defined above.
      Matching only the "reg-name" rule from [URI] limits the additional
      domain name validation (Section 6.3) to DNS domain names or non-IP
      hostnames.  A URI that contains an IP address might be matched
      against an IP-ID in place of a URI-ID by some lenient clients.
      This document does not describe how a URI that contains no "host"
      component can be matched.  Note that extraction of the "reg-name"
      might necessitate normalization of the URI (as explained in
      Section 6 of [URI]).  For example, a URI-ID of
      <> would be split into a DNS domain name
      portion of and an application service type
      of sip (associated with an application protocol of SIP as
      explained in [SIP-CERTS]).

   If the reference identifier produces a domain name, the client MUST
   match the DNS name; see Section 6.3.  If the reference identifier
   produces an IP address, the client MUST match the IP address; see
   Section 6.4.  If an application service type is present, it MUST also
   match the service type; see Section 6.5.

6.3.  Matching the DNS Domain Name Portion

   This section describes how the client must determine if the presented
   DNS name matches the reference DNS name.  The rules differ depending
   on whether the domain to be checked is an internationalized domain
   name, as defined in Section 2, or not.  For clients that support
   presented identifiers containing the wildcard character "*", this
   section also specifies a supplemental rule for such "wildcard
   certificates".  This section uses the description of labels and
   domain names in [DNS-CONCEPTS].

   If the DNS domain name portion of a reference identifier is not an
   internationalized domain name (i.e., an FQDN that conforms to
   "preferred name syntax" as described in Section 3.5 of
   [DNS-CONCEPTS]), then the matching of the reference identifier
   against the presented identifier MUST be performed by comparing the
   set of domain name labels using a case-insensitive ASCII comparison,
   as clarified by [DNS-CASE].  For example, WWW.BigCompany.Example
   would be lower-cased to www.bigcompany.example for comparison
   purposes.  Each label MUST match in order for the names to be
   considered a match, except as supplemented by the rule about checking
   wildcard labels in presented identifiers given below.

   If the DNS domain name portion of a reference identifier is an
   internationalized domain name, then the client MUST convert any
   U-labels [IDNA-DEFS] in the domain name to A-labels before checking
   the domain name or comparing it with others.  In accordance with
   [IDNA-PROTO], A-labels MUST be compared as case-insensitive ASCII.
   Each label MUST match in order for the domain names to be considered
   to match, except as supplemented by the rule about checking wildcard
   labels in presented identifiers given below.

   If the technology specification supports wildcards in presented
   identifiers, then the client MUST match the reference identifier
   against a presented identifier whose DNS domain name portion contains
   the wildcard character "*" in a label, provided these requirements
   are met:

   1.  There is only one wildcard character.

   2.  The wildcard character appears only as the complete content of
       the left-most label.

   If the requirements are not met, the presented identifier is invalid
   and MUST be ignored.

   A wildcard in a presented identifier can only match one label in a
   reference identifier.  This specification covers only wildcard
   characters in presented identifiers, not wildcard characters in
   reference identifiers or in DNS domain names more generally.
   Therefore, the use of wildcard characters as described herein is not
   to be confused with DNS wildcard matching, where the "*" label always
   matches at least one whole label and sometimes more; see
   [DNS-CONCEPTS], Section 4.3.3 and [DNS-WILDCARDS].  In particular, it
   also deviates from [DNS-WILDCARDS], Section 2.1.3.

   For information regarding the security characteristics of wildcard
   certificates, see Section 7.1.

6.4.  Matching an IP Address Portion

   Matching of an IP-ID is based on an octet-for-octet comparison of the
   bytes of the reference identity with the bytes contained in the
   iPAddress subjectAltName.

   For an IP address that appears in a URI-ID, the "host" component of
   both the reference identity and the presented identifier must match.
   These are parsed as either an "IPv6address" (following [URI],
   Section 3.2.2) or an "IPv4address" (following [IPv4]).  If the
   resulting octets are equal, the IP address matches.

   This document does not specify how an SRV-ID reference identity can
   include an IP address, as [SRVNAME] only defines string names, not
   octet identifiers such as an IP address.

6.5.  Matching the Application Service Type Portion

   The rules for matching the application service type depend on whether
   the identifier is an SRV-ID or a URI-ID.

   These identifiers provide an application service type portion to be
   checked, but that portion is combined only with the DNS domain name
   portion of the SRV-ID or URI-ID itself.  Consider the example of a
   messaging client that has two reference identifiers: (1) an SRV-ID of
   _xmpp-client.messenger.example and (2) a DNS-ID of app.example.  The
   client MUST check (1) the combination of (a) an application service
   type of xmpp-client and (b) a DNS domain name of messenger.example as
   well as (2) a DNS domain name of app.example.  However, the client
   MUST NOT check the combination of an application service type of
   xmpp-client and a DNS domain name of app.example because it does not
   have an SRV-ID of in its list of reference

   If the identifier is an SRV-ID, then the application service name
   MUST be matched in a case-insensitive manner, in accordance with
   [DNS-SRV].  Note that per [SRVNAME], the underscore "_" is part of
   the service name in DNS SRV records and in SRV-IDs.

   If the identifier is a URI-ID, then the scheme name portion MUST be
   matched in a case-insensitive manner, in accordance with [URI].  Note
   that the colon ":" is a separator between the scheme name and the
   rest of the URI and thus does not need to be included in any

6.6.  Outcome

   If the client has found a presented identifier that matches a
   reference identifier, then the service identity check has succeeded.
   In this case, the client MUST use the matched reference identifier as
   the validated identity of the application service.

   If the client does not find a presented identifier matching any of
   the reference identifiers, then the client MUST proceed as follows.

   If the client is an automated application, then it SHOULD terminate
   the communication attempt with a bad certificate error and log the
   error appropriately.  The application MAY provide a configuration
   setting to disable this behavior, but it MUST NOT disable this
   security control by default.

   If the client is one that is directly controlled by a human user,
   then it SHOULD inform the user of the identity mismatch and
   automatically terminate the communication attempt with a bad
   certificate error in order to prevent users from inadvertently
   bypassing security protections in hostile situations.  Such clients
   MAY give advanced users the option of proceeding with acceptance
   despite the identity mismatch.  Although this behavior can be
   appropriate in certain specialized circumstances, it needs to be
   handled with extreme caution, for example by first encouraging even
   an advanced user to terminate the communication attempt and, if they
   choose to proceed anyway, by forcing the user to view the entire
   certification path before proceeding.

   The application MAY also present the user with the ability to accept
   the presented certificate as valid for subsequent connections.  Such
   ad hoc "pinning" SHOULD NOT restrict future connections to just the
   pinned certificate.  Local policy that statically enforces a given
   certificate for a given peer SHOULD be made available only as prior
   configuration rather than a just-in-time override for a failed

7.  Security Considerations

7.1.  Wildcard Certificates

   Wildcard certificates automatically vouch for any single-label
   hostnames within their domain, but not multiple levels of domains.
   This can be convenient for administrators but also poses the risk of
   vouching for rogue or buggy hosts.  For example, see [Defeating-SSL]
   (beginning at slide 91) and [HTTPSbytes] (slides 38-40).

   As specified in Section 6.3, restricting the presented identifiers in
   certificates to only one wildcard character (e.g.,
   "*.bigcompany.example" but not "*.*.bigcompany.example") and
   restricting the use of wildcards to only the left-most domain label
   can help to mitigate certain aspects of the attack described in

   That same attack also relies on the initial use of a cleartext HTTP
   connection, which is hijacked by an active on-path attacker and
   subsequently upgraded to HTTPS.  In order to mitigate such an attack,
   administrators and software developers are advised to follow the
   strict TLS guidelines provided in [TLS-REC], Section 3.2.

   Because the attack described in [HTTPSbytes] relies on an underlying
   cross-site scripting (XSS) attack, web browsers and applications are
   advised to follow best practices to prevent XSS attacks; for example,
   see [XSS], which was published by the Open Web Application Security
   Project (OWASP).

   Protection against a wildcard that identifies a public suffix
   [Public-Suffix], such as * or *.com, is beyond the scope of
   this document.

   As noted in Section 3, application protocols can disallow the use of
   wildcard certificates entirely as a more foolproof mitigation.

7.2.  Uniform Resource Identifiers

   The URI-ID type is a subjectAltName entry of type
   uniformResourceIdentifier as defined in [PKIX].  For the purposes of
   this specification, the URI-ID MUST include both a "scheme" and a
   "host" component that matches the "reg-name" rule; if the entry does
   not include both, it is not a valid URI-ID and MUST be ignored.  Any
   other components are ignored because only the "scheme" and "host"
   components are used for certificate matching as specified under
   Section 6.

   The quoted component names in the previous paragraph represent the
   associated [ABNF] productions from the IETF Proposed Standard for
   Uniform Resource Identifiers [URI].  Although the reader should be
   aware that some applications (e.g., web browsers) might instead
   conform to the Uniform Resource Locator (URL) specification
   maintained by the WHATWG [URL], it is not expected that differences
   between the URI and URL specifications would manifest themselves in
   certificate matching.

7.3.  Internationalized Domain Names

   This document specifies only matching between reference identifiers
   and presented identifiers, not the visual presentation of domain
   names.  Specifically, the matching of internationalized domain names
   is performed on A-labels only (Section 6.3).  The limited scope of
   this specification likely mitigates potential confusion caused by the
   use of visually similar characters in domain names (for example, as
   described in Section 4.4 of [IDNA-DEFS], [UTS-36], and [UTS-39]); in
   any case, such concerns are a matter for application-level protocols
   and user interfaces, not the matching of certificates.

7.4.  IP Addresses

   The TLS Server Name Indication (SNI) extension only conveys domain
   names.  Therefore, a client with an IP-ID reference identity cannot
   present any information about its reference identity when connecting
   to a server.  Servers that wish to present an IP-ID therefore need to
   present this identity when a connection is made without SNI.

   The textual representation of an IPv4 address might be misinterpreted
   as a valid FQDN in some contexts.  This can result in different
   security treatment that might cause different components of a system
   to classify the value differently, which might lead to
   vulnerabilities.  Consider a system in which one component enforces a
   security rule that is conditional on the type of identifier but
   misclassifies an IP address as an FQDN, whereas a second component
   correctly classifies the identifier but incorrectly assumes that
   rules regarding IP addresses have been enforced by the first
   component.  As a result, the system as a whole might behave in an
   insecure manner.  Consistent classification of identifiers avoids
   this problem.

   See also Section 3, particularly the last paragraph.

7.5.  Multiple Presented Identifiers

   A given application service might be addressed by multiple DNS domain
   names for a variety of reasons, and a given deployment might service
   multiple domains or protocols.  TLS extensions such as the Server
   Name Indication (SNI), as discussed in [TLS-EXT], Section 3, and
   ALPN, as discussed in [ALPN], provide a way for the application to
   indicate the desired identifier and protocol to the server, which it
   can then use to select the most appropriate certificate.

   This specification allows multiple DNS-IDs, IP-IDs, SRV-IDs, or URI-
   IDs in a certificate.  As a result, an application service can use
   the same certificate for multiple hostnames, such as when a client
   does not support the TLS SNI extension, or for multiple protocols,
   such as SMTP and HTTP, on a single hostname.  Note that the set of
   names in a certificate is the set of names that could be affected by
   a compromise of any other server named in the set: the strength of
   any server in the set of names is determined by the weakest of those
   servers that offer the names.

   The way to mitigate this risk is to limit the number of names that
   any server can speak for and to ensure that all servers in the set
   have a strong minimum configuration as described in [TLS-REC],
   Section 3.9.

7.6.  Multiple Reference Identifiers

   This specification describes how a client may construct multiple
   acceptable reference identifiers and may match any of those reference
   identifiers with the set of presented identifiers.  [PKIX],
   Section describes a mechanism to allow CA certificates to be
   constrained in the set of presented identifiers that they may include
   within server certificates.  However, these constraints only apply to
   the explicitly enumerated name forms.  For example, a CA that is only
   name-constrained for DNS-IDs is not constrained for SRV-IDs and URI-
   IDs, unless those name forms are also explicitly included within the
   name constraints extension.

   A client that constructs multiple reference identifiers of different
   types, such as both DNS-IDs and SRV-IDs as described in
   Section 6.1.1, SHOULD take care to ensure that CAs issuing such
   certificates are appropriately constrained.  This MAY take the form
   of local policy through agreement with the issuing CA or MAY be
   enforced by the client requiring that if one form of presented
   identifier is constrained, such as a dNSName name constraint for DNS-
   IDs, then all other forms of acceptable reference identities are also
   constrained, such as requiring a uniformResourceIndicator name
   constraint for URI-IDs.

7.7.  Certificate Trust

   This document assumes that if a client trusts a given CA, it trusts
   all certificates issued by that CA.  The certificate checking process
   does not include additional checks for bad behavior by the hosts
   identified with such certificates, for instance, rogue servers or
   buggy applications.  Any additional checks (e.g., checking the server
   name against trusted block lists) are the responsibility of the
   application protocol or the client itself.

8.  IANA Considerations

   This document has no IANA actions.

9.  References

9.1.  Normative References

              Mockapetris, P., "Domain names - concepts and facilities",
              STD 13, RFC 1034, DOI 10.17487/RFC1034, November 1987,

   [DNS-SRV]  Gulbrandsen, A., Vixie, P., and L. Esibov, "A DNS RR for
              specifying the location of services (DNS SRV)", RFC 2782,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC2782, February 2000,

              Lewis, E., "The Role of Wildcards in the Domain Name
              System", RFC 4592, DOI 10.17487/RFC4592, July 2006,

              Klensin, J., "Internationalized Domain Names for
              Applications (IDNA): Definitions and Document Framework",
              RFC 5890, DOI 10.17487/RFC5890, August 2010,

              Klensin, J., "Internationalized Domain Names in
              Applications (IDNA): Protocol", RFC 5891,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC5891, August 2010,

   [IPv4]     Postel, J., "Internet Protocol", STD 5, RFC 791,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC0791, September 1981,

   [IPv6]     Hinden, R. and S. Deering, "IP Version 6 Addressing
              Architecture", RFC 4291, DOI 10.17487/RFC4291, February
              2006, <>.

   [LDAP-DN]  Zeilenga, K., Ed., "Lightweight Directory Access Protocol
              (LDAP): String Representation of Distinguished Names",
              RFC 4514, DOI 10.17487/RFC4514, June 2006,

   [PKIX]     Cooper, D., Santesson, S., Farrell, S., Boeyen, S.,
              Housley, R., and W. Polk, "Internet X.509 Public Key
              Infrastructure Certificate and Certificate Revocation List
              (CRL) Profile", RFC 5280, DOI 10.17487/RFC5280, May 2008,

   [RFC2119]  Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
              Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC2119, March 1997,

   [RFC8174]  Leiba, B., "Ambiguity of Uppercase vs Lowercase in RFC
              2119 Key Words", BCP 14, RFC 8174, DOI 10.17487/RFC8174,
              May 2017, <>.

   [SRVNAME]  Santesson, S., "Internet X.509 Public Key Infrastructure
              Subject Alternative Name for Expression of Service Name",
              RFC 4985, DOI 10.17487/RFC4985, August 2007,

   [TLS-REC]  Sheffer, Y., Saint-Andre, P., and T. Fossati,
              "Recommendations for Secure Use of Transport Layer
              Security (TLS) and Datagram Transport Layer Security
              (DTLS)", BCP 195, RFC 9325, DOI 10.17487/RFC9325, November
              2022, <>.

   [URI]      Berners-Lee, T., Fielding, R., and L. Masinter, "Uniform
              Resource Identifier (URI): Generic Syntax", STD 66,
              RFC 3986, DOI 10.17487/RFC3986, January 2005,

9.2.  Informative References

   [ABNF]     Crocker, D., Ed. and P. Overell, "Augmented BNF for Syntax
              Specifications: ABNF", STD 68, RFC 5234,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC5234, January 2008,

   [ACME]     Barnes, R., Hoffman-Andrews, J., McCarney, D., and J.
              Kasten, "Automatic Certificate Management Environment
              (ACME)", RFC 8555, DOI 10.17487/RFC8555, March 2019,

   [ALPACA]   Brinkmann, M., Dresen, C., Merget, R., Poddebniak, D.,
              Müller, J., Somorovsky, J., Schwenk, J., and S. Schinzel,
              "ALPACA: Application Layer Protocol Confusion - Analyzing
              and Mitigating Cracks in TLS Authentication", 30th USENIX
              Security Symposium (USENIX Security 21), September 2021,

   [ALPN]     Friedl, S., Popov, A., Langley, A., and E. Stephan,
              "Transport Layer Security (TLS) Application-Layer Protocol
              Negotiation Extension", RFC 7301, DOI 10.17487/RFC7301,
              July 2014, <>.

   [DANE]     Hoffman, P. and J. Schlyter, "The DNS-Based Authentication
              of Named Entities (DANE) Transport Layer Security (TLS)
              Protocol: TLSA", RFC 6698, DOI 10.17487/RFC6698, August
              2012, <>.

              Marlinspike, M., "New Tricks for Defeating SSL in
              Practice", Black Hat DC, February 2009,

   [DNS-CASE] Eastlake 3rd, D., "Domain Name System (DNS) Case
              Insensitivity Clarification", RFC 4343,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC4343, January 2006,

              Hu, Z., Zhu, L., Heidemann, J., Mankin, A., Wessels, D.,
              and P. Hoffman, "Specification for DNS over Transport
              Layer Security (TLS)", RFC 7858, DOI 10.17487/RFC7858, May
              2016, <>.

   [DTLS]     Rescorla, E., Tschofenig, H., and N. Modadugu, "The
              Datagram Transport Layer Security (DTLS) Protocol Version
              1.3", RFC 9147, DOI 10.17487/RFC9147, April 2022,

              Daboo, C., "Use of SRV Records for Locating Email
              Submission/Access Services", RFC 6186,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC6186, March 2011,

   [HTTP]     Fielding, R., Ed., Nottingham, M., Ed., and J. Reschke,
              Ed., "HTTP Semantics", STD 97, RFC 9110,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC9110, June 2022,

              Sokol, J. and R. Hansen, "HTTPS Can Byte Me", Black Hat
              Briefings, November 2010, <

   [NAPTR]    Mealling, M., "Dynamic Delegation Discovery System (DDDS)
              Part Three: The Domain Name System (DNS) Database",
              RFC 3403, DOI 10.17487/RFC3403, October 2002,

   [NTS]      Franke, D., Sibold, D., Teichel, K., Dansarie, M., and R.
              Sundblad, "Network Time Security for the Network Time
              Protocol", RFC 8915, DOI 10.17487/RFC8915, September 2020,

              Mozilla Foundation, "Public Suffix List",

   [QUIC]     Thomson, M., Ed. and S. Turner, Ed., "Using TLS to Secure
              QUIC", RFC 9001, DOI 10.17487/RFC9001, May 2021,

   [RFC9000]  Iyengar, J., Ed. and M. Thomson, Ed., "QUIC: A UDP-Based
              Multiplexed and Secure Transport", RFC 9000,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC9000, May 2021,

   [SECTERMS] Shirey, R., "Internet Security Glossary, Version 2",
              FYI 36, RFC 4949, DOI 10.17487/RFC4949, August 2007,

              West, M., "Secure Contexts", W3C Candidate Recommendation
              Draft, September 2021,

   [SIP]      Rosenberg, J., Schulzrinne, H., Camarillo, G., Johnston,
              A., Peterson, J., Sparks, R., Handley, M., and E.
              Schooler, "SIP: Session Initiation Protocol", RFC 3261,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC3261, June 2002,

              Gurbani, V., Lawrence, S., and A. Jeffrey, "Domain
              Certificates in the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP)",
              RFC 5922, DOI 10.17487/RFC5922, June 2010,

   [SIP-SIPS] Audet, F., "The Use of the SIPS URI Scheme in the Session
              Initiation Protocol (SIP)", RFC 5630,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC5630, October 2009,

   [SMTP-TLS] Fenton, J., "SMTP Require TLS Option", RFC 8689,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC8689, November 2019,

              Schwartz, B., "Service Binding Mapping for DNS Servers",
              RFC 9461, DOI 10.17487/RFC9461, November 2023,

              Schwartz, B., Bishop, M., and E. Nygren, "Service Binding
              and Parameter Specification via the DNS (SVCB and HTTPS
              Resource Records)", RFC 9460, DOI 10.17487/RFC9460,
              November 2023, <>.

   [TLS]      Rescorla, E., "The Transport Layer Security (TLS) Protocol
              Version 1.3", RFC 8446, DOI 10.17487/RFC8446, August 2018,

   [TLS-EXT]  Eastlake 3rd, D., "Transport Layer Security (TLS)
              Extensions: Extension Definitions", RFC 6066,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC6066, January 2011,

              Barnes, R., Iyengar, S., Sullivan, N., and E. Rescorla,
              "Delegated Credentials for TLS and DTLS", RFC 9345,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC9345, July 2023,

   [URL]      van Kesteren, A., "URL", WHATWG Living Standard, September
              2023, <>.

   [US-ASCII] American National Standards Institute, "Coded Character
              Sets - 7-bit American Standard Code for Information
              Interchange (7-Bit ASCII)", ANSI INCITS 4-1986 (R2007),
              June 2007.

   [UTS-36]   Davis, M. and M. Suignard, "Unicode Security
              Considerations", Revision 15, Unicode Technical
              Report #36, September 2014,

   [UTS-39]   Davis, M. and M. Suignard, "Unicode Security Mechanisms",
              Version 15.1.0, Revision 28, Unicode Technical
              Standard #39, September 2023,

   [VERIFY]   Saint-Andre, P. and J. Hodges, "Representation and
              Verification of Domain-Based Application Service Identity
              within Internet Public Key Infrastructure Using X.509
              (PKIX) Certificates in the Context of Transport Layer
              Security (TLS)", RFC 6125, DOI 10.17487/RFC6125, March
              2011, <>.

   [WSC-UI]   Saldhana, A. and T. Roessler, "Web Security Context: User
              Interface Guidelines", W3C Recommendation REC-wsc-ui-
              20100812, August 2010,

   [X.509]    ITU-T, "Information Technology - Open Systems
              Interconnection - The Directory: Public-key and attribute
              certificate frameworks", ISO/IEC 9594-8, ITU-T
              Recommendation X.509, October 2019.

   [X.690]    ITU-T, "Information Technology - ASN.1 encoding rules:
              Specification of Basic Encoding Rules (BER), Canonical
              Encoding Rules (CER) and Distinguished Encoding Rules
              (DER)", ISO/IEC 8825-1:2021 (E), ITU-T
              Recommendation X.690, February 2021.

   [XMPP]     Saint-Andre, P., "Extensible Messaging and Presence
              Protocol (XMPP): Core", RFC 6120, DOI 10.17487/RFC6120,
              March 2011, <>.

   [XSS]      Kirsten, S., et al., "Cross Site Scripting (XSS)", OWASP
              Foundation, 2020,

Appendix A.  Changes from RFC 6125

   This document revises and obsoletes [VERIFY] based on the decade of
   experience and changes since it was published.  The major changes, in
   no particular order, include:

   *  The only legal place for a certificate wildcard is as the complete
      left-most label in a domain name.

   *  The server identity can only be expressed in the subjectAltNames
      extension; it is no longer valid to use the commonName RDN, known
      as CN-ID in [VERIFY].

   *  Detailed discussion of pinning (configuring use of a certificate
      that doesn't match the criteria in this document) has been removed
      and replaced with two paragraphs in Section 6.6.

   *  The sections detailing different target audiences and which
      sections to read (first) have been removed.

   *  References to the X.500 directory, the survey of prior art, and
      the sample text in Appendix A have been removed.

   *  All references have been updated to the latest versions.

   *  The TLS SNI extension is no longer new; it is commonplace.

   *  Additional text on multiple identifiers, and their security
      considerations, has been added.

   *  IP-ID reference identifiers have been added.  This builds on the
      definition in [HTTP], Section 4.3.5.

   *  The document title has been shortened because the previous title
      was difficult to cite.


   We gratefully acknowledge everyone who contributed to the previous
   version of this specification [VERIFY].  Thanks also to Carsten
   Bormann for converting the previous version of this specification to
   Markdown so that we could more easily use Martin Thomson's
   i-d-template software.

   In addition to discussions within the UTA Working Group, the
   following people provided official reviews or especially significant
   feedback: Corey Bonnell, Roman Danyliw, Viktor Dukhovni, Lars Eggert,
   Patrik Fältström, Jim Fenton, Olle Johansson, John Klensin, Murray
   Kucherawy, Warren Kumari, John Mattson, Alexey Melnikov, Derrell
   Piper, Maria Ines Robles, Rob Sayre, Yaron Sheffer, Ryan Sleevi,
   Brian Smith, Petr Špaček, Orie Steele, Martin Thomson, Joe Touch,
   Éric Vyncke, Paul Wouters, and Qin Wu.

   A few descriptive sentences were borrowed from [TLS-REC].


   Jeff Hodges coauthored the previous version of this specification
   [VERIFY].  The authors gratefully acknowledge his essential
   contributions to this work.

   Martin Thomson contributed the text on the handling of IP-IDs.

Authors' Addresses

   Peter Saint-Andre
   United States of America

   Rich Salz
   Akamai Technologies
   United States of America