Secure Your Site: The Importance of an SSL

SSL Certificate? What is it? What does it stand for? Secure Sockets Layer Certificate. A SSL is a security protocol that creates an encrypted connection between the user and the server over which to send information.

Information and data security protocols are always changing, always adapting to new threats, and always advancing in the cyber world. Because of this, in is imperative that the small business owner and web masters do what they can to keep their websites up to date. Installing an SSL Certificate onto your site is one of the best ways to add preventative security in a complex cyber world, and here’s why:

1. Encryption

When using an SSL certificate, all information sent to a server is encrypted. This encryption ensures that only the intended server can read that information. This prevents hackers from reading information such as usernames and passwords submitted through a login form to gain access to members only sections of websites.

2. Authentication

A valid SSL certificate makes sure that the right information is sent to the right person. Without it, data is left open for an interruption or relay to an unwanted party. For example, a hacker could interrupt a website loading and redirect the browser to a similar but slightly different site. This could have a visitor submitting credit card information to a malicious site that looks exactly like your own.

3. SEO Ranking Boosts

Search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing are always changing their algorithms to improve their own search results based on users input. In January 2018, Google implemented a major search ranking boost on all sites that include a valid SSL certificate. Other major search engines have followed suit.

4. Protection Against Phishing Attacks

SSL Certificates help to provide the necessary checks to make sure your website is valid by making it extremely difficult for scammers to impersonate a safe and legitimate website. For example, helping to prevent fake links in spam emails that are used to copycat legitimate businesses and service providers.

5. Increased Customer Trust

Aside from the ‘https://’ instead of the ‘http://’ prefix to the website name, a visitor on a secure site may also see a padlock or a green background in the address bar. Sometimes there are even trust seal graphics included based on the SSL provider. These visuals along with the previously listed perks all combine into increased customer trust.

Though not limited to these five reasons, installing an SSL Certificate onto your site is one of the best ways to add preventative security in a complex cyber world. Whether you have just a ‘simple one page’ website that just displays information, or you’ve got a complex ecommerce site, it’s highly recommended all websites have an SSL certificate.