Internet has revolutionised the world. With the advent of the 21st century the world has seen a massive boost in the digital scene. With the power of Internet, the world has become a smaller place. Everything that you need or wish to know can be seen at a few clicks of your fingertips.
Capitalising on this idea, traditional store based businesses have also shifted to the Internet in the hopes of scaling it even further. By building a website and uploading their products and services on it, small businesses can now reach a massive audience not limited by physical barriers.
However, when operating an online business, trust is an important factor in this field. Your businesses reputation can make or break depending on your customer’s level of trust on you. This can have a direct impact on your sales as well. As a business and website owner, it is your job to establish and solidify this trust between you and your customer for a healthy long term partnership.
One important aspect of this is having a secure website. By showing that you respect your customers privacy and their data you can solidify your foundations. That’s why having an SSL certificate for your website is a must. Now a question might arise in your mind as to what exactly is an SSL certificate and why is it such a huge deal. However fret not as we will go through all the points to ensure that you get an in-depth understanding.
SSL or Secure Socket Layer is a security protocol which encrypts any and all communication that takes place between the website and the server. When a user clicks on any element of your website, the website contacts the backend server providing the input given by the user and takes an output from the server which it then displays to the user.
Sometimes a user can input sensitive information such as their personal details or credit card details in order to make a payment on your website. If by chance, a hacker invades the communication channel and steals the data, the security of the user is compromised. To combat this, an SSL certificate provides a secured tunnel for the data to travel to and fro between the website and the server, which ultimately prevents hackers from snooping on such data.
Whenever a user interacts with a website an initial communication process takes place which is initiated by this protocol and is known as the TLS handshake. As soon as a handshake takes place, two keys are generated which are unique for that particular session. These keys are responsible for the secure transmission of data between the website and the server.
TLS which stands for Transport Layer Security is website security protocol which emphasizes on data security and privacy. Primarily TLS has three main components which fulfil its security pre-requisites:
TLS ensures that all the data that is communicated between the website and the server is safe and secure and doesn’t get intercepted by people with malicious intents in their minds.
With the generation of keys, the handshake is able to verify that the sources are legitimate and trusted and that information can be passed between them.
This component ensures that the data which is transferred reaches the destination without having encountered any changes en route. This ensures that the integrity of the data has been maintained and that it has not been tampered with.
Having an SSL certificate on your website, is a proclamation declaring that you value your user’s security and that you are willing to take any adequate steps required to protect it.
When an SSL certificate is added to your website, the URL of your website now states HTTPS as opposed to HTTP. That extra S stands for secure, the security which is obtained by having an SSL certificate. Also you will notice a green padlock signal in the address bar. This is another visual indicator of a website having an SSL certificate.
If you were to click on this symbol, you will come across the details of the SSL certificate which protects the website. It will state the provider of the certificate, the domain for which it was issued, the date it was issued, its expiry date and the public key of the certificate. The private key of this certificate is kept confidential and is stored with the owner of the certificate.
However keep in mind that SSL certificates cannot thwart all attacks. There are some attacks which target SSL certificates and may result in your website being downed. Therefore having a properly configurated SSL certificate is important as it minimises that risk.
As this results in fewer attacks on your website, your website will start to look more trustworthy and professional to your clients. This increases your chances of having a long term business partnership as they can be rest assured that their data is in safe hands.
No matter how big or small a business is, consumers take their privacy very seriously. They are always on the lookout for businesses which can provide them security as well as privacy while interacting with them.
Having an SSL certificate makes your task as business owner as well as website owner, a bit easier. You don’t have to put out advertisements highlighting your website’s security as the SSL certificate speaks for itself. Therefore it is always a good practice to have an SSL certificate for your website.
Concluding today’s topic we hope that we have made clear the importance of having an SSL certificate for your website. We discussed what is an SSL certificate and how does it work, it’s various intricacies, the visual factors which are displayed when you employ an SSL certificate on your website as well as how it can improve your customer relations which will help you to scale your business. We hope that you were able to understand these concepts and apply them for your business if you haven’t already.