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HTTPs Encryption: Why You Should Use SSL Certificates

https encryption

2018 was an eventful year for technology and it’s only going to increase in 2019. Between the Facebook security breach, the Google+ API vulnerability, and many other less famous incidents – one thing is for certain. Cybersecurity dominated 2018 and 2019 is expected to be no different.

With cyber attacks being so prevalent, businesses are starting to notice a shift in public perception when it comes to the companies they work with when it comes to data security. Feeling safe is priority: people don’t want to have to worry about their information being breached on or off the web.

While this has been a growing trend for a several years now, it has also transitioned cyber security from being a feature, to a necessity.

2019 is the year of HTTPs.

What Exactly is HTTPs?

To understand what HTTPs means and how it works, you need to know a few definitions.

HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol): In simple terms, this is an application layer protocol. Essentially, HTTP is the protocol that involves information sent between a browser (ex: Google Chrome or Firefox) and a website itself. If you were to interrupt that connection and intercept it, you’d see in plain text what was being communicated between the website and the browser.

This can create extremely vulnerable conditions in certain situations. For example, if you are purchasing products on a website with a basic HTTP, your personal information like your address, credit card info and whatever else you submit can be intercepted and stolen.

The thieves are the only ones who want this to happen – so HTTPs encryption was introduced as a secure option.

HTTPs (HyperText Transfer Protocol Security): Adding additional security components, the language being transmitted between website and browser is encrypted and kept from being read cyber criminals.

SSL (Secure Socket Layer): This is a certificate that enhances your security protocol. This is just another way of saying that your site has the technology in place to securely encrypt transactions between the website and browsers etc.

The types of SSL Certificates may vary, but their basic coding provides security and encryption.

You can always tell if a website is secure by looking for certain factors:

  • https:// shows before the URL destination (ex: https://www.google.com)
  • A lock (sometimes green) icon may appear in the left corner of your navigation bar

HTTPs in Browsers

Today, many users look for these key signals to see if they are using a secured website.

When this was first being used, its primary purpose was a security feature for websites that utilized ecommerce and to transfer personal information (ex: financial, medical, legal). However, it has transitioned into having an HTTPs encryption as a standard.

After going through the basics of this HTTPs encryption, you may still have some additional questions about which feature would best suit your business. Here are a few of the most common topics and questions below:

I Don’t Have A Large Business – Do I Still Need HTTPs?

Providing An SSL Tells Your Customers That You Care About Their Security

By utilizing an SSL certificate and transforming it from HTTP to HTTPs, you are providing an extra layer of security for your consumers. They know right away that your website is secure. Nothing they are viewing or how they are interacting on your website is being monitored or watched by a malicious user. It shows that you care about your customer’s user experience – and that reflects highly for company brand.

It Provides Additional Security Against Hackers

Having an SSL certificate installed on your website also helps protect your website from potential breaches or hacking attempts. The extra layer of HTTPs encryption provides an external wall that is difficult for hackers to break and infect. While you might not exactly need one for the style of your business’ website, it still helps protect against possible attacks and saves you capital on potential cleanup and patches once a website does get infected or breached.

HTTPs Improves SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Having this HTTPs encryption applied on your website shows popular search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing! that you take your user’s experience and security seriously. They are able to recognize this and return with increased rankings on their engines.

We all know that higher rankings lead to more traffic – this leads to more clients and customers.

Google has been favoring websites with HTTPs for awhile now. However, after recent technology-related world events, they have doubled-down.

Starting July 2018, websites that do not use HTTPs will be labeled “Not Secure”.  The last thing you want your prospective clients to see when visiting your site is a message about poor security.

 

https encryption

 

More than 70% of websites are utilizing HTTPs and Google is really trying to make it the norm across the board.

Failure to increase security on your site risks lower search rankings and even increases bounce rates. It is also proven that HTTP sites load slower, causing Google to penalize them for site speed. Overall, the industry is punishing sites that do not value security because they are striving to give the best user experience possible.

So, what should you take away from all of this?

An SSL does incur minimal extra costs, but failure to secure your website can cost you a lot more: potential customers, reduced website traffic and impact overall user experience.

Your IT partner or web hosting provider should have the necessary tools to help you with your website security. It should be simple and affordable enough to keep from breaking your budget.

Want to take the next step and convert to HTTPs, but not sure how?

Andromeda has trained technicians and developers that are more than happy to help you with the conversion. Just give us a call to get started today!