What is HTTPS?
Hypertext transfer protocol secure (HTTPS) is the secure version of HTTP, which is the primary protocol used to send data between a web browser and a website. HTTPS is encrypted in order to increase the security of data transfer. This is particularly important when users transmit sensitive data, such as by logging into a bank account, email service, or health insurance provider.
Websites that do not use HTTPS are marked differently than those that are. Look for a padlock in the URL bar to signify the webpage is secure. Web browsers take HTTPS seriously; Google Chrome and other browsers flag all non-HTTPS websites as not secure.
What Is an SSL Certificate?
The SSL certificate itself is simply a text file installed on a web server. The information in the certificate lets the browser know that the domain name listed in the certificate matches the domain name of the site. When the match has confirmation, the visitor’s browser can make a secure connection.
The secure connection allows traffic between the website and the visitor to be encrypted. This is so no third-party can eavesdrop on the connection.
So it’s probably obvious why you would want that kind of security for financial transactions made on the web. But why encrypt “regular” traffic?
An SSL certificate helps protect your site against third parties collecting or aggregating your visitor’s behavior. They can do this by using cookies or other tracking devices. However, SSL/HTTPS alone cannot completely prevent third-party tracking.
Perhaps the most compelling reason to use an SSL certificate on your website is the fact that without it your site will be labeled “Not secure,” by the most widely used web browsers. And that’s not a message any of us want to send to our visitors.
Additionally, Google has stated that if all other factors are equal, HTTPS can act as a tiebreaker in the search engine results. Some sites have witnessed almost double the number of top 10 search engine rankings, after switching to HTTPS.
Their overall page visibility also improved.
Advantage of HTTPS
- Secure Communication: HTTPS makes a secure connection by establishing an encrypted link between the browser and the server or any two systems.
- Data Integrity: HTTPS provides data integrity by encrypting the data and so, even if hackers manage to trap the data, they cannot read or modify it.
- Privacy and Security: HTTPS protects the privacy and security of website users by preventing hackers from passively listening to communication between the browser and the server.
- Faster Performance: HTTPS increases the speed of data transfer compared to HTTP by encrypting and reducing the size of the data.
- SEO: The use of HTTPS increases SEO ranking. In Google Chrome, Google shows the Not Secure label in the browser if users’ data is collected over HTTP.
- Future: HTTPS represents the future of the web by making the internet safe for users and website owners.