Secure HTTPS

/ versus insecure HTTP

Internet users should have no doubt that their emails, usernames, passwords and credit card information won't be stolen. SSL certificates create secure connection which guarantees no fraud. In this article you will learn what the SSL certificate means, how it works and why you need one.

WHAT IS AN SSL CERTIFICATE

SSL certificate is a digital document which encrypts data sent between the browser and the website. Think of it as a passport for the website. Depending on its type, SSL may contain a domain name, legal information and certificate validity.

The Certification Authority is an entity that issues digital certificates. They have agreements with all most popular browsers: Chrome, Firefox, IE, Safari. Certification authorities make sure that the applicant actually has the right to use the domain, and check its documents. If everything is fine, CA issues SSL.

SSL proves that the domain really belongs to you. Browsers won’t trust a website without it, as if you wouldn’t trust your money to a bank with no contract.

SECURE HTTPS VS. INSECURE HTTP

When you visit a website, your browser connects to the web server which is running this specific website. If connection is not secure — HTTP, passwords and credit card numbers can be stolen. SSL certificates create secure connection — HTTPS, where S means “secure”. With an SSL all data you enter remains encrypted. Even if hackers get access to your information, they won’t decrypt it.

Let’s assume that you are keen on car tuning and you have found a good blogger in this area. You have subscribed to his weekly newsletters by signing up your email. In a week your inbox is full of spam. Hackers have got your email because the blog didn’t have SSL certificate. If the connection was secure, your email address would not be spammed.

How to make sure that connection to the website is secure? Just check the address bar of your browser. If everything is ok, you will see a green lock saying “secure”. If the website is not protected with SSL, your browser will flag it as insecure.

SSL certificate protects your reputation and visitors of your website. Hackers won’t steal their credit card information, usernames and passwords. They trust the website, if they see a green lock saying “secure” in browser’s address bar.

HOW HTTPS WORKS

When you visit a website with SSL, your browser communicates with the website to protect your personal data. Their communication is so blazing fast that a user will never notice it.

Browser connects to a website with an SSL.

Website sends a copy of its SSL in response.

Browser checks if it is a true certificate.

If it is, browser and website generate an encryption code.

With this code they create a secure connection.

This site is now secure for visiting. Hackers will get nothing.

WHO NEEDS SSL AND WHY

5 years ago HTTPS was used only by those who needed high security, e.g. payment systems. Today, SSL is equally necessary for bloggers, web stores and online banks. It becomes a requirement from both tech companies and simple users.

According to Bloomberg, by 2020 online transactions volume is to grow up to 27.7 trillion USD. However, the number of fraud cases rises too. That is why technology companies are constantly working on protecting internet users.

Apple requires apps to use secure network connections over HTTPS. Google search robots label websites without SSL certificates as insecure and lower their positions in search results. Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox flag HTTP pages as “Not Secure”. This way browsers warn visitors that their personal information and money can’t be stolen.

SSL certificates have become a must for companies of any size, not just enterprizes. Without SSL they lose search engine positions, visitors and money.