Have you ever come across websites having a padlock sign, or HTTPS protocol? If yes, then these are the signs that the website is SSL certified, and an SSL certificate helps in encrypting the data between the server and the client, ensuring zero data breaches. But, if you are a website owner, you must have asked yourself “What will the SSL certificate guard against, apart from encrypting the data?”
Well, there are quite a few things that can be protected with the SSL spell, and to give you a brief idea about it, I will be sharing some common advantages of using an SSL certificate on the website.
So, let’s hop into the conversation!
What will the SSL certificate guard against?
Whether you are a visitor or an owner of the website, you always want the best for your online protection, and so, you will get it while using an SSL certificate. An SSL certificate will guard against many malicious cyber-attacks like; Man-in-the-middle attacks, phishing scams, hijacking, and website duplication.
And to get a clear idea of how SSL certificate guards against these vulnerabilities, just read on:
- Decreased Man-the-middle attack:
As we all know, a man-in-the-middle attack is carried out by a hacker to steal all the user data by intercepting between the browser and the server. But, with the use of an SSL certificate on a website, the risk literally gets lower, as an SSL certificate encrypts all the data traveling between the two ends.
Thus, leaving no space for the hacker to jump into the connection and cause vulnerability.
Although, there are chances that a hacker can find a way in, and therefore, I recommend using an EV or OV type of SSL certificate, as it drastically lowers the chances of MITM attacks. Plus, regular audits of private keys and SSL certificates from time to time should be carried out to ensure zero error, and regular updates respectively.
- No more phishing scam:
Online phishing is carried out by hackers to gain financial advantage from the user, and they simply do it by redirecting the users to a fake website and then stealing the keys of the credit card or debit card.
Usually, hackers target those websites which are not SSL secured, meaning they target HTTP websites, which are more vulnerable to this kind of cyber-attack. When a user tries to feed in his/her confidential details on HTTP sites, the data that travels between the browser and the server is not secured and can be easily snooped by a hacker.
Therefore, using an SSL certificate on a website helps in hiding confidential data by encrypting it in the form of scrambled data, then decrypting it when it reaches the destination source.
- No more website hijacking:
Yes, an SSL certificate nullifies the chances of website hijacking by encrypting each and every data of the website login page, which prevents the hackers from knowing the password.
Therefore, if you are running an eCommerce or bank website, it is highly recommended to get an EV SSL certificate, for strong and better website protection.
- Prevents website duplication:
Have you ever come across some websites that have the same domain name? Well, this is known as “website duplication” and is carried out by hackers to gain your private data.
For example, many people type in Amazon.com, and when they get a set of search results, they get a second Amazon website, but with a slight change of character “Amaz0n.com.”
Therefore, if you run your business through a website and want to get verified by your customers, then you should always use an SSL certificate. SSL certificate not only displays a padlock beside the URL but also displays the organization information when clicked on it.
Thus, helping the user to protect their privacy and the owner to gain full authority over the domain name.
Apart from the mentioned ones, there are two other main advantages of using an SSL certificate:
- Better SEO ranking:
Want to rank your website on Google?
Then, use an SSL certificate on your website, as it helps in increasing the trust of the user. Thus, helping you to increase your website traffic and SEO ranking automatically.
- SSL improves customer trust:
As mentioned above, a user trusts an SSL-certified website more than a non-SSL-certified one, because an SSL certificate helps in encrypting data for both ends and increasing your website credibility.
Also, if you are hosting an eCommerce website, then you should opt for a truly secured EV, or OV SSL certificate, as it helps the user to identify your website, thus giving out a good rate of conversions.
Why SSL Certificate Expired?
SSL certificates have expiry dates hardcoded into them, and the main reason it expires is that it helps in keeping the SSL encryption up to date.
Thus, when you renew your SSL certificate every two to three years, it ensures that you always stay updated on the latest SSL versions and ciphers.
But what if your SSL certificate expires?
Don’t worry, and just follow these simple steps:
- Generate a Certificate Signing Request.
- Select your SSL certificate.
- Select the validity of your SSL certificate.
- Fill up all necessary details.
- Click on the continue button.
- Review your SSL order.
- Now, initiate payment.
- Finally, install your SSL certificate on your server.
Why SSL certificate is invalid?
If your SSL certificate is invalid, then these might be the possible reasons that might cause the problem:
- Misconfiguration of certificate:
If you have made any mistake while installing an SSL certificate, then it might be the reason for invalid SSL flagging.
- Domain mismatch:
If you have installed SSL on another domain rather than the one for which it was registered, then it calls for failed SSL verification because of the domain mismatch.
- Break in the chain of trust:
If the identification of the SSL certificate issuer can’t be verified due to an expired certificate or any other reason, then it is called a Break in the chain of trust. Thus, causing the error of an invalid SSL Certificate.
- Incorrect date and time of your computer:
Generally, SSL certificates are issued for a period of one to two years, and therefore, your computer must show the correct date and time. But if the time and date are incorrect, then it causes verification failure and an error message will be shown.
- Your SSL certificate was issued from an unreliable CA:
If you have not issued your SSL certificate from a reliable CA, then it may cause a higher risk of breaking the chain of trust, which directly flags your SSL certificate as invalid.
- Broken certificate structure:
A broken SSL certificate structure can also cause an invalid SSL certificate error. There are many ways in which the structure of your SSL certificate may be broken and among them can be an Invalid signature.
- Only SHA-1:
If your certificate uses only the Secure Hash Algorithm-1 hash function, then it could be flagged as invalid, as it is considered an outdated one.
- Certificate revoked:
Lastly, if by chance you have provided misinformation to your CA or have caused some misrepresentation from your side, then it can also cause an error in the SSL certificate, thus flagging it as invalid.
In this case, your CA will notify you for sure.
Online security is the major concern of the internet community, and therefore, using cyber security products like SSL certificates is practiced more and more by website owners.
An SSL certificate will not only encrypt the communication line between server and client, but will also guard against many other cyber security threats like phishing, man-in-the-middle attack, website hijacking, and so on. Therefore, getting an SSL certificate for your website is recommended, regardless of the type of niche you are aiming for.