Unlocking The SSL Certificate

Have you ever noticed the URL for a website starts with ‘HTTP’ or ‘HTTPS’? Maybe you’ve seen the little lock icon in your browser? What exactly do they mean? A secure website (HTTPS) will have an SSL certificate.

What is an SSL Certificate?

Short for Secure Sockets Layer, SSL is a protocol that sends sensitive information over the internet. If a website has an SSL certificate, it means that the site is encrypted and secure. Data that you share with the site is encrypted and not accessible to anyone but the site.

Let’s take a step back and talk technically. How does SSL actually protect your information?

When you send a payment, purchase an item, or submit your information through a website, that data is being sent to the site. When you are on an encrypted website (HTTPS), the data transfer is encrypted. Meaning, no one can access that information as it is being sent to the website. The way this works is that when you enter your information, a key is put on the screen to encrypt the data. This key is locked in the browser. It can only be opened by the server and can only be unlocked if the site is encrypted with SSL. If the site is not encrypted, then someone can get the information and use it to their benefit (like identity thieves).

When you are on a secure server and an encrypted website, the information you are putting out there cannot be exposed. This way you do not need to worry about selling your property, buying goods and services, or submitting your information.

Your data, such as your address and credit card number, are safe and not exposed.

To check if a site is secure, you can usually look for the HTTPS at the front of the URL address.

http://www.example.com/ versus https://example.com

When you see https: in the address, you know that site is secure.

At B. McGuire Designs, we provide an SSL certificate included at no additional charge for all websites on our Website Care and hosting plans.

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