Trust me, I use SSL
The Internet is becoming a busy place. More than 3 billion people use the Web to browse websites, send emails, connect on social media and even do banking. There is also a greater tendency to use the Internet to earn a living. With so many different users, each with their own goals in mind, think of all the different networks that are being set up every second. From your phone to a website to a service provider to the bank, a spider web of paths. But is it a secure Internet?
Messages are usually sent between Internet devices as plain text. The truth is that anyone with enough IT sense can look in on a path and read your message. So, what can you do to protect information? The answer is SSL. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. See it as putting a seal on your message, which not everyone can break!
What happens when I use SSL?
When you as a Web user are trying to go onto a website, SSL acts as a gate keeper. The SSL lets the web server first identify itself. When prompted by the SSL, the website server has to first send a SSL certificate to vouch for it being what it says it is. On your side, the browser can check if the SSL certificate can be trusted. The server can also check if the browser is indeed who they say they are, via an identical process. If this is the case, the SSL encrypted session can start. Secure data can be sent between browser and server on a protected path. The browser will notice a locked padlock in the URL space. Your browser link will also now start with https, not just http. This is assurance that information is secure and only accessible to the person it is intended for. Besides keeping your message private, it also ensures that no meddling will take place between you and the server. You are on a secure Internet.
I’m not into e-commerce. Do I need SSL?
The Internet is a simple solution to a lot of issues. Unfortunately, the simplicity of the Internet has its down side. A hacker can easily access your Internet browsing session and even become the browser. As website owner, you would like browsers to feel safe and secure on your site. Your browsers are starting to associate that little green padlock as a safety blanket. It seems that you need SSL if you want to be successful online. It shows browsers that they can trust your site.
On a secure Internet, https is the policeman that keeps the bad elements out. It might be time to reconsider the costs to your website of not having SSL. Google engineers already indicated at the end of 2014 that websites without https might be flagged as unsecure sites1. Surely that will strongly influence web users’ browsing choices. Let it inform your choice about SSL as well.
As of 2017 all sites we build will be hosted using SSL / https protocol whether they are ecommerce or not.