I'm (desperately) looking for an icon to represent a Certification Authority, like the ones that sign X.509 certificates we use in secure e-commerce.

I need something which is concrete (not an abstract "idea" being depicted in a drawing) and conveys affordability, solidity, importance... I searched the Internet, finding stuff like this which is not impressive at all.

Well, I've seen somewhere a CA represented by a building which you can often see, mostly in the USA, for libraries, courthouses, and town halls. The 'front' of the building, endowed with columns and a typical triangular pediment, looks like the White House and recalls a Greek temple, somewhat.

I couldn't find a clip-art or icon of this kind of building, maybe because I search using the wrong keywords.

Can you help me?

EDIT: I'm searching for something like this, but less 'stylized' and less clip-artish.

  • Even I don't think I would draw the line between "Greek looking building" and CA. Why not use something that looks like a certificate(fedoraproject.org/w/uploads/2/2e/…)?
    – Ben Brocka
    Commented Sep 23, 2011 at 20:12
  • 1
    The kind of building you're after is called a Capitol Building. Here's a clipart example: clipartguide.com/_pages/0511-0712-2617-2728.html
    – PhillipW
    Commented Sep 23, 2011 at 20:34
  • @Ben Brocka: it's not for its greek-ness PhilipW: thanks
    – gd1
    Commented Sep 23, 2011 at 20:57
  • @gd1 still, it's not a common association, unless it's well known in your user base I would avoid it. Such a symbol makes me think "bank" or "wall street," CA wouldn't even be on my list. If anything it seems much more abstract than the certificate.
    – Ben Brocka
    Commented Sep 23, 2011 at 21:09
  • @Ben: I think I'll put a certificate upon the building, in the upper-left corner or in the bottom-right one
    – gd1
    Commented Sep 23, 2011 at 21:10

2 Answers 2


How about using a badge (police-style badge, I mean)? Recognizable and it implies authority and trust.


What is the purpose of the icon? Are you looking for a static logo or the icon on an active UI element (that can be clicked)?

For the UI element, the icon by itself will almost certainly be insufficient for recognition -- additional text is necessary either on the button itself or at least in a tooltip. Icon itself is almost irrelevant, as there is no established convention. Padlock, police badge, official building with columns, certificate/diploma with seal -- almost anything would work, as long as it's consistent with your other icons.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.