SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. It is also referred to as Transport Layer Security (TLS) and is essential for encrypting information that is exchanged on the internet.
An SSL certificate is an electronic document that authenticates the identity of a website when creating an encrypted connection. This small data file is digitally bound to an organization’s details and includes a cryptographic key to those details, allowing secure connections from a web server to a browser.
An SSL certificate contains:
An SSL certificate provides privacy, security and data integrity for website and user personal information. If a website isn’t encrypted with an SSL certificate, anyone can read sensitive data as information is passed from computer to computer to get to the destination server.
Sensitive data includes:
Beyond encryption, an SSL certificate also provides:
You should have an SSL certificate if you are:
There are three types of SSL certificates:
The difference between these certificates is the vetting/verification process. The encryption levels are the same for each type of certificate.
Both OV and EV certificates require the issuer to independently verify the information about your business — the EV certificate requiring more extensive validation. DV certificates only verify you are the registrant of the domain name that will be associated with the certificate.
You can further define your SSL certificate based on how many domains you want to protect:
Your website host might be able to provide you with an SSL certificate. If your host doesn’t sell SSL certificates or your situation calls for more than what they offer, you can buy SSL certificates from a Certificate Authority (CA). Some of the most popular CAs include:
Before purchasing an SSL certificate from any CA, consider the following:
Website security is just one of the key areas Knucklepuck supports for our clients. By leaving the details of things like SSL certificates to us, our clients can focus on the products and services they bring to their clients. Contact us for more information on how we can help you.
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