The latest version of the SSL protocol has been submitted to the IETF and is available as an Internet Draft. Netscape is actively pursuing the standardization of SSL within the framework of the IETF standards process and is also working with industry consortium groups to ensure that open and interoperable security standards exist now and in the future. You can participate in the IETF effort by subscribing to the IETF mailing list: send email to with subscribe in the subject. If you would like to send comments directly to Netscape during this process, please send email to We review all comments we receive, but unfortunately we cannot provide individual responses.

Netscape has developed an SSL reference implementation of the Version 3.0 specification called SSLRef. You can apply to download SSLRef 3.0 for noncommercial use or, if you are interested in commercially licensing this reference implementation, please send email to The license restrictions for this reference implementation have no impact on anyone's ability to freely implement the SSL protocol purely from the SSL specification.

If you wish to submit technical questions or contribute to technical discussions about SSL, you can subscribe to by sending mail to and including the word subscribe in the subject line of your message. Please understand that this is a highly technical forum for discussing detailed programming and implementation issues. To unsubscribe to, send mail to and include the word unsubscribe in the subject line of your message.


Version 3.0 of the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL V3.0) is described in the specification document. SSL V3.0 is a security protocol that prevents eavesdropping, tampering, or message forgery over the Internet.

This version of the specification is dated March, 1996 and supersedes the December 1995 version. We thank everyone who participated in the open and valuable design discussions.

Netscape expects to ship products that conform to the March specification. Please note that Netscape server products with SSL V3.0 support both SSL 2.0 and SSL 3.0 protocols (SSL 3.0 was designed to allow this for transition purposes). SSL 2.0 has a limited lifetime.

Navigation bar

Corporate Sales: 415/937-2555; Personal Sales: 415/937-3777; Government Sales: 415/937-3678
If you have any questions, please visit Customer Service, or contact your nearest sales office.

Copyright © 1997 Netscape Communications Corporation

This site powered by Netscape SuiteSpot servers.