Why Does Your Website Need an SSL Certificate?

Whether you are purchasing a product or subscribing to an online newsletter, you must share some information to complete each transaction. And it is an SSL Certificate that establishes a safe connection between a user and the host.

There was a time when antivirus and a basic firewall were more than enough to protect your data, but that’s not the case anymore. Users these days are under continual brute force attacks and malware bombardment. As such, the onus of protecting customer interests and data is on the websites. It makes it rather essential to have an SSL Certification for your website.

Keep on reading to know what precisely an SSL Certificate is and how it protects your website.

What Is an SSL Certificate?

SSL is the abbreviation for Secure Socket Layer, which is more commonly known as TLS (Transport Layer Security). It is an internet security protocol that encrypts internet traffic and verifies the server identity. A website using SSL/ TLS certificate will have “HTTPS” in its URL.

An SSL/ TLS certificate helps the website improve its security. It is a file hosted on the website’s origin server containing the public key and identity for the website and relevant information. A browser can communicate with the website’s origin server only after verifying the SSL Certificate and obtaining the public key, kept secure and secret.

Information Contained in an SSL Certificate

An SSL or TLS Certificate essentially contains the following encrypted information:

  1. Name of the domain for which the certificate was issued
  2. Information of the organization, device, or person the certificate was issued to
  3. CA (Certificate Authority) Details
  4. Digital signature of the Certificate Authority
  5. Details of subdomains associated 
  6. Date of issuance of the certificate
  7. The public key (The private key details are kept confidential)

The private and public key pair used for an SSL Certificate is the long strings of character that facilitate encrypting and decrypting data. However, the public key encryption can be decrypted with the private key only and the other way around.

Please check my YouTube short video on 5 Benefits of SSL Certificate

How Does an SSL Certificate Protect Your Website?

Before getting into how an SSL Certificate facilitates security to your website, let’s understand why a website needs an SSL/ TLS Certificate in the first place? 

An SSL Certificate can be regarded as a website safety tool that keeps user data safe, curbs outside attacks, and strengthens users’ trust by verifying host’s identity.

The main ways in which an SSL Certificate protects your website are as follows-

  1. Encryption: As stated earlier, it is the public, private key-pairing that makes SSL encryption possible and practical. The public key required to open the secure private connection is embedded in the server’s SSL Certificate and provided to the client when accessing the website. To put it in simple words, an SSL certificate encrypts confidential data being sent over the internet for securely delivering it from the sender’s end to the recipient’s end. If not for the encryption, the sensitive user data like payment information, credit card details, personal information, etc., can be easily comprehended by third parties and hacked by the attackers.
  2. Authentication: An SSL certificate successfully connects the clients to the correct server by verifying the public-private key pairing. Not only does it protect your website from domain spoofing, but it also saves you from many other phishing attacks. An SSL certification equips your website with the authority to securely access the server that a user can identify by looking for the “HTTPS” indication in the URL. Modern internet browsers also aid users in differentiating the safe website from the fraud one by flagging the secure website with green and unsafe websites with a red flag. Read down how it works.
  3. HTTPS Protocol: “HTTPS” is nothing but the secure form of Hypertext Transfer Protocol, i.e., “HTTP.” The single ‘S’ differentiates the websites with SSL/ TLS certification from the websites that do not have the certification. The “HTTPS” in URL makes a substantial difference, especially for business websites. These days, the web browsers mark the safe websites, i.e., the ones with SSL certification with a green flag, while the ones that do not have SSL certification get a red flag. As a result, it becomes convenient for the users to differentiate trustworthy websites from suspicious ones. Therefore, an SSL Certification is must-have for the business’s websites for these days to induce trust amongst the users.

Benefits of SSL Certificate

There are numerous benefits of having SSL Certification for your website, the most prominent ones being-

  1. SSL encrypts confidential user data like user ID & Password, payment credentials & details, personal information, etc.
  2. Having an HTTPS URL saves your website from Google’s warning of an unsafe website.
  3. Google counts HTTPS as a ranking signal and helps websites with SSL Certification to perform better.
  4. SSL Certification helps your website get the green flag on the web browser, which allows you to establish reliability amongst the users.
  5. SSL Certification helps your website comply with the PCI (Payments Card Industry) norms.

Different Types of SSL Certificate and Their Usability

Type of SSL CertificateUsability
Domain Validation (DV) SSL2n– bit encryption and multi-browser connectivity
Organization Validation (OV) SSLValidates company/ origination/ business
Extended Validation (EV) SSLHighest security, suitable for e-commerce and payment gateways
Wildcard SSLSecure single domain and multiple subdomains under a single certificate
Multi-domain SSLSecure multiple domains under a single certificate
Multi-domain Wildcard SSLCombined features of multi-domain and wildcard SSL certificates
Unified Communication Certificate (UCC) SSL Protects multiple FQDN (Fully Qualified Domain Names) under single SSL certificates
Code Signing SSLThe digital signature tech that lets publishers sign scripts, codes, and content

Conclusion

The SSL Certification not only helps you protect the user interests and data from potential online threats but also substantiates the credibility and SEO friendliness of your website. So, get an SSL Certificate and improve user trust, traffic, and revenue for your website.

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