Internet security is a constant concern for everyone these days thus making SSL Certificates critical. SSL provides privacy, security and data integrity for both your websites and your users’ personal information.
What is SSL certificates?
SSL or Secure Sockets Layer is a security technology that encrypts the link between a web server and a browser. This ensures that the data shared between web servers and browser remain private and once SSL certificate is installed, you will see a green padlock and HTTPS at the start of the URL.
What Does SSL Certificates Do?
Having an SSL certificate not only ensures security but also:
1. Protects And Encrypt Data
The credit card numbers or any sensitive information that you send on the Internet is passes from computer to computer to get to the destination server. Any computer in between you and the server can see it. Having an SSL certificate encrypts your sensitive data and makes it readable to only the server you are sending the information to. This protects it from hackers and identity thieves.
2. Stops Cybercrime
Cybercriminals often find that one of the weakest links in the typical business infrastructure occurs when information is in transit. Websites often focus on the security of stored information and not on the information that is in transit. SSL certificate provides protection against such transit-based hacks.
3. Trust Seal
Securing and maintaining the trust of a customer is perhaps most important for any business. SSL helps to build that trust by providing visuals like a lock icon and green address bar that indicates the site is completely secure. These visuals not only seal the trust of any customer but also adds to the brand power.
4. Improves Google Ranking
If a site is secure and trusted, people will visit it more. Google is already beginning to favor https sites over HTTP. Any website which is not secure will have a warning as ‘not secure’ with a red triangle. Further, Google will also blacklist the site from the search engine. Also, an SSL site loads much faster than HTTP.
How does SSL work?
- A browser requests a secure page
- The browser obtains the IP address of the site from a DNS server. To initiate this secure connection, the browser requests that the server identifies itself by sending a copy of its SSL certificate to the browser.
- The browser checks the certificate to ensure it is signed by trusted CA and has not expired or been revoked.
- The browser confirms that the website can be trusted then it creates a symmetric session key which it encrypts with the public key in the website’s certificate. The session key is sent to the web server.
- The web server uses its private key to decrypt the symmetric session key and sends back an acknowledgment encrypted with a session key.
- All data transmitted between the server and the browser is encrypted and secure now.
SSL Certificates are mandatory because of the increasing theft cases and hacking attacks. It ensures that Google does not flag your website as ‘not secure’.
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