Whether you are a small business just emerging into your industry or a well-established brand, your customers place their information in your hands, trusting you to keep it safe. Payment information, login credentials, and other sensitive data are all prime targets for hackers and malicious actors. Whether it is your website, database, or an appointment in your office, the information that your customers share with you must remain confidential and accessible only to those who need it to better serve the customer. In this post, we will focus on how to set up Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) technology, commonly recognized as HTTPS, on your website.
What are HTTPS & SSL?
To understand HTTPS and SSL, it is necessary to explain HTTP. To avoid getting lost in the technical details, HTTP stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol and is basically a set of rules for transmitting data across the internet. HTTPS stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure and protects the transmitted data by encrypting and decrypting it as it travels from your web server to the customer’s webpage. SSL was the original method by which data was encrypted during transmission, but due to data security concerns, it is highly recommended that you use Transport Layer Security (TLS). Again, sparing the technical details, vulnerabilities in SSL necessitate the adoption of TLS by any company concerned with data security. Although the term SSL is used often on many websites, it is worth noting that they are likely only using it because it is more recognizable to the average person than TLS.
The benefits of SSL/TLS
- Protects data while it is in transit from your server to your customer or vice versa (this only protects data in transit, you still need to properly secure your server)
- Protects against man-in-the-middle attacks (without encryption, data in transit is in plain text and can be changed or accessed by hackers)
- Contributes to your company’s credibility and authenticity
- Improved ranking and preference by Google (Google has started to steer customers from non-HTTPS websites)
How to add an SSL certificate to your company’s website
Step 1 – Make sure that you are using a dedicated IP address, not a shared IP address
Step 2 – Purchase and activate the SSL certificate.
Step 4 – install SSL certificate and update your site
Note: We recommend contacting your webmaster or hosting provider for assistance.
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