Almost everything is available online, with just a couple of clicks on relevant websites in the rapid age of instant gratification. However, beyond the seemingly magical process lies a web of technical intricacies. Hackers and scammers are always on the lookout for loopholes amidst website security measures for their personal gains.
This is where the end to end encryption offered by an SSL certificate comes into play. Are you wondering about its functioning and how to buy SSL certificates? The blog ahead aims to help you with the same in a reader-friendly, lucid, and crisp manner.
About SSL certificate
SSL certificates refer to small digital files that ensure the end to end encryption of the data transmitted between the website and client browser. Issued by a certificate authority (CA) such as DigiCert,Comodo an SSL certificate is inclusive of the following components,
- Public key
- Subject’s name
- Issuer’s name
- Digital signature (certificate’s fingerprint)
- Validity dates
You can check above details in below snapshot of the information included in an SSL certificate.
Benefits of SSL certificates
The following are the accrued benefits of installing an SSL certificate,
- It protects customer data: Suppose that you own an ecommerce store that requires users to enter their PII (Personally Identifiable Information) such as credit card details, bank account numbers, etc. Now your visitors will only trust you enough to enter such sensitive data if they notice that your site is HTTPS secured, which means that a legitimate SSL certificate has been installed on your site. It ensures encryption of plain text into cipher text of the data in transit, which protects the data from landing into the hands of actors with malicious intent.
- No more Google warnings: With effect from the 17th of October 2018, Google has delivered on its promise of making the internet a safer place by calling out on unsecured HTTP websites. Installing an SSL certificate frees your site from the following warnings, which in turn ensures greater customer trust and thereby increased revenues.
- Gives a boost to SEO rankings on SERPs: In concurrence with the algorithm’s ongoing updates, Google announced HTTPS (having SSL certificate) as a ranking parameter in 2014. Being an indicator of trustworthiness will generate more traffic on your secure website, thereby increasing your SEO rankings.
Workings of SSL certificates
SSL makes use of asymmetric encryption for securing data in transit by using Public Key Cryptography. It consists of a pair of mathematically related cipher keys.
- Public key: the one that can be securely shared with client browsers
- Private key: must always be stored securely in private and is never transmitted.
In asymmetric cryptography, the same key used for encryption cannot be used to decrypt the cipher text. One key is used to encrypt the plain text information into cipher text, while the other key is used to translate the cipher text into plain text. For every session, a random key is generated.
Kinds of SSL certificates, and which one is best suited for you?
Let us discuss the different types of SSL certificates.
- Domain Validated (DV) SSL certificates: A DV SSL certificate certifies the domain is registered and that a site administrator or owner runs the URL. No paperwork is required, and it can be issued almost instantaneously. The CA (certificate authority) can validate the domain ownership through either DNS, email. Though they are cheap, and it does not take long to acquire one. The DV certificate is ideal for a single domain owner or blogger or forum websites.
- Organization Validated (OV) SSL certificates: The OV SSL certificates verify that you own the domain and own a registered organization in a specific geographical location. The amount of trust reflected in an OV SSL certificate is much more significant than that in a DV SSL certificate. The process of obtaining an OV SSL certificate is like that of a DV SSL certificate, albeit it requires some extra steps to verify the company’s registered and legal as well operational identity. Issuance of an OV SSL certificate requires 1-3 business days. It also shows company information in the certificate details, e.g.
Customers will be more likely to purchase if they see an OV certificate than a DV certificate.
- Extended Validation (EV) SSL certificate: The most authenticate and expensive of them all, it provides even more records to verify an enterprise’s ownership. It proves the ownership of the domain and operational location and the legality of the business entity.
The business owner needs to provide supporting documentation regarding the authenticity of the enterprise. Such type of certificate is issued between 4-5 business days.
If you own an ecommerce company, a plain DV SSL certificate will not fit the bill. You will need an EV or OV level SSL certificate, preferably to gain customer trust. DV certificates are useful for bloggers.
To sum up, installing an SSL certificate is a prerequisite for ensuring the transmitted data security in today’s age and times. Are you wondering where to buy SSL certificate from? You can search for authenticate SSL providers like Sectigo, GlobalSign, SSL2BUY for catering to all your SSL certificates needs. Stay safe, people!