If you’ve found yourself asking what is SSL or you don’t think you need one, then we’d like to introduce you to a hypothetical situation.
Let’s say you’ve built a website that sells an online database of eBooks. You’ve taken the time to build up a fantastic product line, complete with eBooks that you’re determined will sell out in no time. Your readers start to purchase eBooks from you, and even send you messages via your website with sensitive information, like their credit card numbers, PayPal account information and even their home addresses.
Then something awful happens – your website gets hacked. Suddenly, all of that sensitive information is up for grabs and the personal details that your readers have sent to you are exposed to whatever third parties are out there listening in.
That’s where an SSL certificate comes into play. What is an SSL certificate, you might ask? Simple: with an SSL certificate, you not only get the protection you need to ensure that your website visitors are protected, you can also protect any private information that’s passed along via your web server.
With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the meaning of SSL and how it can keep your website running without allowing outsiders looking in.
What is SSL?
No matter what you’re using your website for, be it to sell products or simply collect email addresses from your readers, an SSL certificate ensures that all information is kept safe and private. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. An SSL certificate encrypts all connections that are made to and from your web server, which means that third parties can’t pick up on this private information.
In today’s hyper-private day and age, you need to demonstrate to your website visitors that you’ve taken the necessary steps to protect their information. Purchasing and enabling an SSL certificate on your website means that your web pages will be marked with an iron padlock and that tells customers that their information will be kept safe.
Not having an SSL certificate means that your online business will suffer. Recent research has indicated that up to 70 percent of online shoppers will halt a transaction if they feel that they can’t trust the website. Having the trusted and instantly recognizable symbol of an SSL certificate means that your transactions won’t be terminated – and that could very easily skyrocket your website’s bottom line.
Choose Your SSL Certificate Carefully
SSL certificates are sold by different vendors, many of which carry different prices for essentially the same service. If you want to ensure that your website remains 100% protected, find an SSL certificate that secures your website URL and all of its sub domains. For example, a Wildcard SSL Certificate will keep all your sub domains secure. This means you won’t have to purchase an individual certificate for every webpage.
If you want to increase your online business, it’s time to take your website security seriously.
For more information on SSL, visit the Domain and Hosting FAQ section of Flying Cow Design.
CEO, Flying Cow Design
Attended University of Auckland
Lives in San Francisco Bay Area