What is an SSL certificate?
First off, SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. This is a security protocol, or technology, used to encrypt traffic and create a secure channel between a workstation and web server. It is also used to validate the identity of a web server to all visitors.
How can I tell a website is secured with an SSL certificate?
If a website has https:// in the address bar it is secured with an SSL certificate.
A green padlock also verifies that the certificate has not expired.
Why do I need an SSL certificate?
It is partially your responsibility to maintain security of your website users if they are providing you with sensitive information.
Sensitive information can include:
- Passwords (Many users will use the same password for an account on your website that they use elsewhere)
- Credit Card Numbers (These should never be stored, but may be typed in on your website)
- Social Security Numbers
- Date of Birth
- Anything else you wouldn’t want to share
You may say, why would someone care if someone knew my birthday!? A lot of personal information can be used to recover passwords of other accounts that contain even more sensitive information. You don’t want information being sent to your website insecurely to be the reason that someone’s email or bank account is hacked.
SSL is required for PCI Compliance. If you run an eCommerce site where you sell products you ABSOLUTELY should have an SSL certificate.
Why do I want an SSL certificate?
Aside from security there are other reasons you would want an SSL certificate.
- Higher SEO Ranking – Google now ranks secure pages higher than non secure pages.
- Increased customer trust – If your customer sees https:// in their address bar, they will trust your site more and have a higher likelihood of purchasing your product. Many people will not purchase products from sites without security, and rightly shouldn’t.
- Encryption – Peace of mind that your site provides a fortress of security for your customer.
Why does everyone not have SSL if it’s so important?
Simply put, lack of knowledge and cost of implementation are the largest reasons that SSL certificates aren’t on every site today. The only reason a site should not be secured is if it is not permanent.
If you are interested in SSL work, audits or just simply want to learn more about SSL yourself, give us a shout in the link below or browse to our Contact Us Page and fill out the form today!
BagelCat LLC – CEO & Software Engineer