Xcert software, inc.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235-242
Journal / PublicationJournal of Information Technology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 1999


Xcert's business is in developing Internet and Intranet security enhancement technology. Xcert was founded in April 1996 by Andrew Csinger and Pat Richard and was headquartered in Vancouver, Canada. Xcert's solution to Internet security was a public key infrastructure (PKI). PKI is a system of digital certificates, certificate authorities (CAs) and other registration authorities that verify and authenticate the validity of each party involved in an Internet transaction. Xcert's PKI technology allows organizations of any size to issue digital certificates to their members. These organizations become their own CA and are empowered to issue digital certificates to their individual client base. This case study is about a start-up company that is in transition from a dream stage to a reality stage. One of the issues that surfaces in the case study is intraindustry competition. Despite being an early entrant into the Internet security business, Xcert faced brutal competition from companies such as Entrust, Nortel, VeriSign and Netscape. The problems facing the company include (1) finances, (2) future direction and leadership, (3) structure, experience and size and (4) marketing. This is a very rich case study with a number of interrelated issues. The case serves two teaching aims. Firstly, this case allows students to confront and discuss real-life issues facing a start-up information technology (IT) company. The students analysing the case are asked to provide alternatives and solutions to the problems by putting themselves in the positions of the founders of the company. Students should come to understand the difficulty in managing a start-up company and the various trade-offs the management needs to make. Secondly, the case study introduces various Internet security concepts to students. © 1999, Association for Information Technology Trust. All rights reserved.

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Publication details (e.g. title, author(s), publication statuses and dates) are captured on an “AS IS” and “AS AVAILABLE” basis at the time of record harvesting from the data source. Suggestions for further amendments or supplementary information can be sent to lbscholars@cityu.edu.hk.

Citation Format(s)

Xcert software, inc. / Siau, Keng.
In: Journal of Information Technology, Vol. 14, No. 3, 09.1999, p. 235-242.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review