What is an SSL certificate?
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer and is a secure protocol developed for sending sensitive information over the internet. If a site you are on is certified, it means that the site is secure and encrypted and any data you enter is safely shared with that website and that website only.
Have you ever noticed that some website URLs start with HTTP while others start with HTTPS? Maybe you’ve noticed a tiny lock icon in the top left corner of your browser and wondered what exactly does it all mean?
Websites that are HTTPS have an SSL certificate and are certified safe.
Let’s talk technical for a second.
How does an SSL certificate actually prevent information theft?
When you break down what Secure Sockets Layer is, you’ll discover it’s asymmetric (or public-key) encryption. This requires each party to generate a public and private key pair. Imagine a padlock on a gate. Anyone can go up to the lock, inspect it, and even try to open it with their key. However, only the right key can actually unlock it. In this example, the padlock is a public key, they are visible to the general public. Private keys are exactly that, private. These private keys are used to unlock public keys.
When you fill out a form on a website without a certificate, the information can be intercepted by a hacker. This site would be classified as not secure.
The information you submitted could be anything from a banking transaction to your credit card information. A hacker could intercept your information in a number of ways, in one of the most common a hacker places a small, undetected listening program on the server that is hosting a website. That program ‘wakes up’ when a website visitor starts typing their information and this listening program will begin capturing the information and send it back to the hacker.
When you visit a website that has an SSL certificate in place, your browser will form a connection with the webserver and bind to it. This connection is secure so that no one besides you and the website where you’re submitting your information can see or access it.
This connection happens instantly. There is no manual work required. You simply need to visit a website with a certificate and your connection will automatically be secured.
Why is an SSL Certificate so important?
You might be thinking, I’m not accepting sensitive information through my website! Regardless of if you are in the business of accepting delicate information or not, being certified is still incredibly important.
SSL Certificate and SEO
In 2014, Google made adjustments to its ever-changing algorithm for SEO rankings. The major change? Websites using Secure Sockets Layer certificates. Google began and still continues to flag sites without SSL certificates as untrustworthy.
Sites with an SSL certificate receive an SEO boost and will be the default result for searchers. If you want to be findable on Google, having a certificate on your website is absolutely necessary.
Why SSL needs for your online payments?
If you are conducting online transactions through your website, it is imperative that you have an SSL certificate. As an online shop, it’s your primary responsibility to ensure that the information being exchanged over your online store is protected.
You prove to your customers that their usernames, passwords, and credit card numbers are not being revealed to malicious hackers by hosting a certificate.
Secure Sockets Layer(SSL Certificate) and consumer trust
Did you know that Google Chrome is the most popular web browser? 44.5% of internet users search the internet using it. On the Chrome browser, you are able to easily spot a site that is SSL certified. Next to the URL is a tiny lock icon. (A site with a certificate shows it locked.) However, if a site does not have a certificate the lock will be open and red text will read ‘Not Secure’. The second a customer lands on a website that is labeled ‘not secure’, they are going to feel less comfortable browsing it, even if there is no sensitive information being passed across it. An SSL certificate has become an absolute necessity for any business that wants to be perceived as trustworthy.
There’s no denying the confidence and trust that a certificate can provide to a site. We can secure a website and demonstrates that your business values customer trust, which is essential to financial success, customer conversion, and business growth.
If your Website is not compliant, reach out now! This is an easy fix that has an instant result!