No, I'm fully aware we don't trust the CAs with our personal data. We're trusting the CAs to vouch for the organizations to whom they issue certificates. But now there are hordes of CAs, some of whom may not be particularly trustworthy, but the browser makers don't descriminate (much).
As a result, we have CAs that we're supposed to trust because our browsers accept them, but those CAs are passing out SSL certs like candy to anyone with a few bucks.
While we're not directly giving our personal data to the CAs, we're trusting the organizations they vouch for on the basis of the supposed trustworthiness of the CAs, when in fact most of them are utterly opaque and unknown to us, thus indirectly trusting them to protect our personal data.
Again I say, anyone on the internet should look at the diagram, look at the list of signing authorities their browsers trust, and ask themselves, "who the hell are all these people and why do I trust them?"
OH I definitely agree that the system is broken. Just looking at the site should make anyone on the internet ask themselves, "who the hell all these CAs are and do we really trust them with our most personal data"?
Yes, I think that encrypting your traffic securely is the right thing to do, and using public-private key pairs with cryptographically strong algorithms is the right way to do it, the trust model was broken the first day that money started to change hands as a surrogate for "trust"
DFN-Verein "creates a unique sub-CA for each institution for which it issues certificates"
I feel sorry for the technical folks who have to implement and maintain such a fucked up idea as per-institutional sub-CAs.
completely unnecessary if you use a good password.
That's a dangerously incorrect assertion to make. People's battle.net accounts don't get compromised because a malicious party cracked a password. Keyloggers, phishing, social engineering, and just plain fraud are all far more common avenues for password leakage, both in battle.net and overall.
The days when a hacker could bang on the front door of a service trying username/password combinations until finding one that worked are long gone. The reason Blizzard introduced authenticators was because their own experience indicated that no matter how tightly locked the servers, or how strong the password requirements, with the client software and hardware out of their control, passwords were still getting out. So they went with the next best convenient security practice: something you know, and something you have.
It's all done with computers now.
$opts[CURLOPT_SSL_VERIFYPEER] = false;
$opts[CURLOPT_SSL_VERIFYHOST] = 2;
That's not wrong, but it still doesn't explain to me why I, as a user, should trust both application A and site B that have agreed to trust each other with a self-signed certificate. The reason was have the CA model is to introduce a trusted third-party* that can verify for us that everything is on the up-and-up. The user should not be in the position of having to trust unknown parties.
*Yes I know the CA companies have problems. Maybe the model is so broken by nature that it doesn't matter, but it's still true that the self-signed model bypasses it.