The Physical Address requirement for an Extended Validation SSL Certificate is just what it sounds like—you have to prove your organization has an established physical presence in the country or state that it's registered in.
Proving your Company's Physical Address
In order to prove your company's physical address, the Certificate Authority will have to verify your company's street address, city, state and country.
The first way the CA is going to attempt to do this is by checking an Online Government Database – be that in your local municipality, your state or your country – for your company's publicly listed address. Everything must match the details on your certificate and enrollment form exactly. Unfortunately, the CA's will not accept PO Boxes or companies registered off-shore.
You might also run into problems with the fact that some government databases do not list a business's physical address. However, if you do run into any issues – as with all of these requirements – there is a relatively simple workaround that will still allow you to get your Extended Validation SSL Certificate.
Alternative Methods to Prove your Company's Physical Address
There are three ways to prove your company's physical address if the CA's search of the online government databases fails to satisfy the requirement.
- Official Registration Documents – You can send in any official registration documents issued by your local government – articles of incorporation, chartered license, DBA statement – and the CA's will accept them as proof of a physical address.
- Dun & Bradstreet – You can use a comprehensive Dun & Bradstreet credit report to verify the physical address of your company. Dun & Bradstreet is a large company that does credit reports on businesses, the CA's view DUNS as an unimpugnable source of information when vetting organizations.
- POL – Finally, you can use a Legal Opinion Letter, sometimes called a Professional Opinion Letter or POL, which is signed by an attorney or an accountant, to prove your company's physical address. Unless you have in-house legal or easy access to an accountant getting a POL can be a pain, but it's benefits are undeniable—outside of the Enrollment Form a POL can be used to satisfy every requirement in the Extended Validation SSL process.
Any of these methods can be used to prove your company's physical address, should the CA's attempts to verify that information via an online government database fail.