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Skipping WCF Certificate Verification: A Guide

With the rise of web services, Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) has become an essential tool for developers to create and consume serv...

With the rise of web services, Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) has become an essential tool for developers to create and consume services. One of the security features offered by WCF is certificate verification, which ensures secure communication between the client and the server. However, in some cases, developers may need to skip this verification process. In this article, we will discuss the reasons for skipping WCF certificate verification and provide a guide on how to do it.

Why Skip WCF Certificate Verification?

Certificate verification in WCF is a crucial step in ensuring secure communication. It involves validating the server's identity before establishing a connection. This verification is performed by comparing the server's certificate with the trusted root certificate authority (CA) on the client's machine.

In most cases, skipping WCF certificate verification is not recommended as it can leave your communication vulnerable to security threats. However, there are a few scenarios where skipping this step may be necessary.

1. Self-Signed Certificates

In a development environment, developers may use self-signed certificates for testing purposes. These certificates are not issued by a trusted CA, and hence, the verification process will fail. In such cases, skipping certificate verification is a feasible solution.

2. Localhost Communication

When a client and server are running on the same machine, communication can be established through the localhost. In this scenario, certificate verification is not required as the communication is happening within the same machine.

3. Time Constraints

Certificate verification involves complex cryptographic operations, which can significantly impact the performance of your application. In time-critical scenarios, skipping certificate verification can improve the overall performance of your application.

Now that we have explored the reasons for skipping certificate verification let's look at how to do it.

How to Skip WCF Certificate Verification?

To skip WCF certificate verification, you need to modify the configuration file of your WCF service or client. The configuration file is a XML file that contains the settings for your WCF application. You can find the configuration file in the project folder under the name 'app.config' for a WCF client and 'web.config' for a WCF service.

To skip certificate verification, you need to add the following lines of code in the configuration file under the <system.serviceModel> tag.



<behavior name="NoCertificateVerification">


<serviceCertificate findValue="localhost" storeLocation="LocalMachine" storeName="My" x509FindType="FindBySubjectName" />





<behavior name="NoCertificateVerification">



<authentication certificateValidationMode="None"/>






In the above code, we have specified the certificate validation mode as 'None', which means that the certificate verification process will be skipped. Additionally, we have also specified the server's certificate details, which will be used for establishing the connection.

After adding these lines of code, you need to specify the behavior name in the <service> and <client> tags, as shown below.


<service name="ServiceName" behaviorConfiguration="NoCertificateVerification">





<endpoint address="URI" binding="basicHttp

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