What is an SSL & why do you need it?

What is an ssl certificate?

  • Stands for Secure Sockets Layer
  • Digital Certificate that encrypts data
  • Authenticates the identity of a website
  • Standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser.

Why should you care about this?

A site using an SSL establishes an encrypted & secure link between a website’s server (a computer that is serving you a website or application) and your browser. This includes Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Apple Safari (iphone & mac users), Google Chrome, Opera & more. Click here to see a more comprehensive list.

Users, when browsing the web your going to want to make sure that a site is secure anytime you are submitting private data or making a purchase.

But my site is a simple site, should I still get an ssl?

No matter what, if you are collecting private data or selling online (eCommerce) your site should definitely have an SSL. No. Questions. Asked.

How can I tell if a site is secure?

The easiest way to tell, check that the web address you are on to find whether it starts with http or https. It’s that little “s” that indicates security.

In addition, you may typically find an indicator somewhere near the domain name. In several browsers we tested it was usually a padlock icon. Currently, there are no Standard icon sets or methods to visually indicate a secure connection in today’s popular browsers.Google’s Chrome, Apple’s Safari, Mozilla’s Firefox, Microsoft’s Edge, etc all have their own way of showing this, you just have to look for it. Once you find the icon, click on it to learn more about the site that you are visiting.

What are my options?

Most website hosting companies and domain registrars offer paid variations of SSL certificates. At netfishes all of our hosting plans come with free Let’s Encrypt.

What’s Let’s Encrypt you say? As stated on letsencrypt.org/about/ “Let’s Encrypt is a free, automated, and open certificate authority (CA), run for the public’s benefit. It is a service provided by the Internet Security Research Group (ISRG).”

Will my search engine results be affected by this?

Short answer, yes. Google is now considering SSL in search rankings like we wrote about in our article Google to consider ranking sites by mobile friendliness.


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