KanekiDev KanekiDev - 1 month ago 31
iOS Question

Loading a X509 pem certificate with password. Objective C

i'm a totally newbie in objective-c and iOS programming.

I need to use a REST API, in which the request requires a mutual SSL authentication with a x509 PEM certificate file and a password for the certificate.

My problem is that i don't really know how to do it in objective C, in C# it would be as easy as:

X509Certificate2 myCertificate = new x509Certificate2(certificatePath, certificatePassword);

just represents the variable of the http request.

I've been looking for a while in many forums and posts, including some old stackoverflow questions.
The main tip people give is "use OpenSSL", but i've read in few places (i think even in a stackoverflow question) that Apple has deprecated OpenSSL.

Question: How could i load a .pem x509 certificate with its password to send in a POST request to a external REST API Service, in objective-C language?

Thank you.


My Own Solution:

Using OpenSSL command to convert .pem file intro pkcs12 certificate:

openssl pkcs12 -export -in "certificateFile" -inkey "KeyFile" -out "certificate.p12"

Then setting up some code found in this tutorial: https://vanjakom.wordpress.com/tag/nsurlconnection/


- (void)connection:(NSURLConnection *)connection didReceiveAuthenticationChallenge:(NSURLAuthenticationChallenge *)challenge
    NSLog(@"Authentication challenge");

    // load cert
    NSString *path = [[NSBundle mainBundle] pathForResource:@"userA" ofType:@"p12"];
    NSData *p12data = [NSData dataWithContentsOfFile:path];
    CFDataRef inP12data = (__bridge CFDataRef)p12data;

    SecIdentityRef myIdentity;
    SecTrustRef myTrust;
    OSStatus status = extractIdentityAndTrust(inP12data, &myIdentity, &myTrust);

    SecCertificateRef myCertificate;
    SecIdentityCopyCertificate(myIdentity, &myCertificate);
    const void *certs[] = { myCertificate };
    CFArrayRef certsArray = CFArrayCreate(NULL, certs, 1, NULL);

    NSURLCredential *credential = [NSURLCredential credentialWithIdentity:myIdentity certificates:(__bridge NSArray*)certsArray persistence:NSURLCredentialPersistencePermanent];

    [[challenge sender] useCredential:credential forAuthenticationChallenge:challenge];


OSStatus extractIdentityAndTrust(CFDataRef inP12data, SecIdentityRef *identity, SecTrustRef *trust)
    OSStatus securityError = errSecSuccess;

    CFStringRef password = CFSTR("userA");
    const void *keys[] = { kSecImportExportPassphrase };
    const void *values[] = { password };

    CFDictionaryRef options = CFDictionaryCreate(NULL, keys, values, 1, NULL, NULL);

    CFArrayRef items = CFArrayCreate(NULL, 0, 0, NULL);
    securityError = SecPKCS12Import(inP12data, options, &items);

    if (securityError == 0) {
        CFDictionaryRef myIdentityAndTrust = CFArrayGetValueAtIndex(items, 0);
        const void *tempIdentity = NULL;
        tempIdentity = CFDictionaryGetValue(myIdentityAndTrust, kSecImportItemIdentity);
        *identity = (SecIdentityRef)tempIdentity;
        const void *tempTrust = NULL;
        tempTrust = CFDictionaryGetValue(myIdentityAndTrust, kSecImportItemTrust);
        *trust = (SecTrustRef)tempTrust;

    if (options) {

    return securityError;

"Code copied from the tutorial, did not copy my own modification for my own needs".

And it's solved