If you have a website, and want to keep your visitors data secure you’ll need to have an SSL certificate.
What is an SSL certificate?
SSL stands for “Secure Sockets Layer”, but they can also be referred to as a ‘Security Certificate’. Whatever you know it as, it is a way that the web browser you are using ensures any data which is submitted on that page is secure and encrypted. You may have noticed that in some web browsers, a green padlock appears in the web address bar to denote that the site is secure.
Why is this important?
If your website requires the user or visitor to input any kind of information, for example their name, username, email address, phone number, credit card details or ANYTHING at all really, then this secure channel of communication should be the protocol used. Especially, hot on the heels of GDPR, this is something that ANYONE with a website should be reviewing immediately. Otherwise you are leaving yourself wide open to the data being intercepted by hackers.
Google’s Secure Web Project
What might also might give you the extra nudge to do it, is Google’s phased project to ensure that the search engine and it’s own browser “Google Chrome” are delivering only secure content to its users, so there is a high possibility that if your website doesn’t have an SSL certificate that it is having a knock on effect to your SEO (search engine optimisation) ranking.
The final phase of Google’s project rolls out in July which will be showing all websites with http:// prefixes rather than the https:// as unsecure, regardless as to whether there is an SSL certificate in place.
So if your domain isn’t SSL certified or https:// this will be flagged as an un-secure site. In a recent blog, Google suggested that there would be SEO benefits for sites that have these features, in an aim to make the web more secure.
Not sure if you’re protected?
If you need help to check or upgrade your website to the SSL and HTTPS protocols, then get in touch with Affordable Hosting. We offer a free migration service, and SSL certificates as standard on our hosting plans. Can you afford not to host with us?