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Introduction:

AS2, a preferred communication protocol, helps in exchanging EDI Business Transactions in a secured and interoperable manner over the internet. When using AS2 transactions in EDI Data Transport, it signifies following key aspects:

  1. Privacy through increased encryption
  2. Authenticity
  3. Data Integrity
  4. Non-Repudiation of Payload and Acknowledgement
  5. Easy Message Management
  6. Interoperability

AS2 Trading Partner – Process Setup:

Sender – Party who sends Payload/Data
Sender – Party who sends Payload/Data
MDN – Message Disposition Notification – Acknowledgement file

MDN Return – Delivery receipts Types:

  • Return Synchronous MDN: MDN is returned back to Sender from Receiver in the same communication session. In detail, Sender initiates a connection session with Receiver and delivers the Payload to Receiver. Then Sender leaves the connection open while waiting for MDN if requested synchronously. Then If the receiver sends a MDN through the same communication session, Sender closes that particular connection session.
  • Return ASynchronous MDN: MDN is returned back to Sender from Receiver in a completely different communication session. In detail, Sender initiates a connection session with Receiver and delivers the Payload to Receiver, Sender then closes the connection. Then the Receiver Initiates a new connection session and sends MDN. When MDN is delivered to Sender, Receiver closes the connection.
  • Return MDN via email: This is rarely used option as name suggests AS2 Return MDN are sent and managed via email rather than a connection.
  • No Return MDN: This option defers the option of returning MDN to AS2 Sender from AS2 receiver but just engages only sending Payload to AS2 receiver.

AS2 Trading partner Management:

AS2 certificate when received should be verified Primarily for its validity. The recommended minimum validity period for any AS2 certificate is 1 Year. The maximum Validity period should not exceed 5 Years.

For managing multiple trading partners using AS2 profiles, a separate support team is recommended for the below list of activities.

  • AS2 Certificates: All trading partner contacts whose certificates which are expiring within a month should be contacted for grabbing new certificates with renewed expiry date. The expiry date of renewed certificates is preferred to be more than 1 year.
  • Planned & Unplanned downtime: All planned and unplanned Sender AS2 server downtime should be communicated to correct stakeholders through email channels. Planned and Unplanned downtimes of receivers AS2 server should be communicated to EDI Business team and any EDI transactions scheduled during downtime should be informed for delayed delivery.
  • Audits: All trading partners should be audited for info like Contact details, Phone numbers, Email IDs, escalation matrix. If any of this information is missing, managing (set of) Receiver(s) AS2 Trading partners would become difficult. For ex: Any downtime or certificate renewal, we need stakeholders’ contact to take it forward.

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