What are the Applicability Statement protocols and how are they used to send and secure critical file transfers? Explore everything you need to know about the Applicability Statements AS2, AS3, and AS4.
AS2 (Applicability Statement 2) is a popular protocol specification for transporting critical data securely and reliably over the internet.
Upgraded from the original protocol (AS1) that was created in the 1990s, the AS2 protocol supports the encryption of messages (also known as AS2 messages) that are then exchanged with trading partners and vendors via HTTPS. These messages are built using the S/MIME format.
AS2 utilizes digital certificates and encryption standards to protect critical information while it’s in transit across systems, networks, and locations. AS2 messages can be compressed, signed, encrypted, and sent over a secure SSL tunnel.
Users can also request an MDN (known as Message Disposition Notification; also sometimes referred to as "receipt") alert to verify that the message was received and decrypted successfully. Using signed receipts to compare the returned message checksum value creates a non-repudiation of receipt (NRR). An NRR gives the sender legal proof of unaltered delivery.
MDNs can be delivered in a variety of ways, including:
This option allows the AS2 server connection to remain open until an MDN is received or a timeout occurs.
This option allows the AS2 server connection to close immediately after the initial transmission completes. When the server processes the AS2 message, the server will open a new connection and send the MDN.
This option allows the AS2 server to return an MDN to the sender via email.
Using the AS2 protocol comes with unique advantages that ensure the streamlining of critical data exchange. These advantages include end-to-end encryption, strong authentication of senders and recipients through the use of digital signatures, and validation of file integrity with successful transfer confirmation.
AS2 is a secure industry standard protocol for sending sensitive data. Organizations who use AS2 often choose it over other file transfer protocols (like FTP or SFTP) because of how easily the protocol helps them meet regulatory compliance requirements and trading partner needs.
End-to-end encryption for sensitive files
Authenticating senders and recipients with digital signatures
Validation of file integrity with successful transfer confirmation
Ability to send/retrieve file transfers of any size or volume
Flexible support for synchronous or asynchronous MDN receipts
Drummond Certified is a label that the Drummond Group (a third-party certification body) gives to products and solutions that have proven their interoperability between AS2 vendors. The certification is extensive and helps ensure that the solution you use will allow you to successfully integrate with your AS2 trading partners.
In order to pass the Drummond Certification process, any product attempting certification must conduct thousands of AS2 protocol test scenarios successfully in the Drummond Group's controlled, vendor-neutral environment. This process uses full matrix interoperability testing between AS2 vendor solutions to verify that important transactions maintain their security and integrity as they are transmitted over the Internet.
GoAnywhere MFT is a Drummond Certified solution for both AS2 and AS4, which helps to ensure successful integration with your AS2 or AS4 trading partners. The Drummond certification process uses full matrix interoperability testing between vendor solutions to verify important transactions maintain their security and integrity as they are transmitted over the Internet. In order to pass the Drummond Certification process, GoAnywhere MFT conducted thousands of AS2 and AS4 protocol test scenarios successfully. This certification provides customers with peace-of-mind that GoAnywhere can handle their most critical AS2 and AS4 documents.
GoAnywhere MFT provides a browser-based interface for configuring and monitoring AS2, AS3, and AS4 protocol file transfers and workflows. Each administrator can be assigned different permissions in GoAnywhere with their own custom dashboards.
Whether your trading partners require you to send files using AS2 or you’re looking for an industry standard protocol to transmit sensitive files that meet regulatory compliance, it’s easy to implement AS2 in your organization. You just need the right solution.
GoAnywhere MFT is a secure managed file transfer solution that simplifies, streamlines, audits, and automates your file transfers across a variety of environments. It provides AS2 client and AS2 server software for small, medium, and enterprise-level organizations.
AS3 (Applicability Statement 3) is a standard used to securely transmit virtually any file type. It was originally created to transfer structured data files, like XML and EDI documents, for business-to-business data sent over FTP(S). These messages are structured using the standard S/MIME format.
AS3 is a secure protocol for sending sensitive data. Organizations using AS3 often choose it over other common file transfer protocols (like FTP or SFTP) because it simplifies the process to meet compliance requirements and trading partner needs.
Users can request MDNs (Message Disposition Notifications), or receipts to verify that the intended AS3 message as received, either as signed or unsigned.
End-to-end encryption for sensitive files through SSL
Transaction records and audits
Delivery receipts and MDN
While AS2 is a transfer protocol, AS3 is a message standard that focuses on message formatting. Where the AS2 protocol requires a dedicated AS2 server and client to send messages, AS3 is flexible: once an AS3 message is composed, it can be transmitted via any other protocol – FTP, SFTP, HTTPS, and more – as long as both the sender and recipient can access the message’s location. Also unlike AS2, AS3 is a push-pull protocol and does not require an ongoing connection.
The AS3 client software in GoAnywhere can automate the delivery of your AS3 messages, send on a schedule, or send based on triggers. With GoAnywhere, you can:
AS4 is a popular file transfer protocol that gives businesses the ability to securely exchange data with their partners. It builds on the foundations set by AS2 to improve security, reliability, and flexibility for delivering and receiving messages. As a Business-to-Business standard, AS4 makes exchanging documents over the internet simple and secure.
AS4 is payload agnostic and can also send multiple payloads in one AS4 message. Unlike AS2, AS4 is based on SOAP and Web Services, which many organizations use, making it more compatible with standard environments.
AS4 is a secure B2B and B2C method for exchanging data: encryption, large file transfers, and are managed for you with AS4. AS4 is an EDI-friendly protocol and is sometimes adopted in EDI communities to simplify EDI integration projects.
AS2 and AS4 are both popular file transfer protocols that allow businesses to exchange data securely with their business partners. AS4 builds on the best of AS2, but works with web services and provides improved delivery notifications.
While AS3 and AS4 may not have much in common besides their names, just what makes them so different? Discover the history of these two protocols, and how they work to improve file transfers in different ways.
The AS4 client software in GoAnywhere can automate your workflows and improve your file transfers. Compress, sign, and encrypt your messages to ensure utmost security, and monitor your data transfers easily with receipts for messages sent and received, as well as with logging.