SSL Certification

One of the most important components of online business is creating a trusted environment where potential customers feel confident in making purchases. SSL certificates create a foundation of trust by establishing a secure connection.

SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, a global standard security technology that enables encrypted communication between a web browser and a web server. It is utilized by millions of online businesses and individuals to decrease the risk of sensitive information (e.g., credit card numbers, usernames, passwords, emails, etc.) from being stolen or tampered with by hackers and identity thieves. In essence, SSL allows for a private “conversation” just between the two intended parties.

To create this secure connection, an SSL certificate (also referred to as a “digital certificate”) is installed on a web server and serves two functions:

  • It authenticates the identity of the website (this guarantees visitors that they’re not on a bogus site)
  • It encrypts the data that is being transmitted
  • Any individual or organization that uses their website to require, receive, process, collect, store, or display confidential or sensitive information. Some examples of this information are:

  • logins and passwords
  • financial information (e.g., credit card numbers, bank accounts)
  • personal data (e.g., names, addresses, social security numbers, birth dates)
  • proprietary information
  • legal documents and contracts
  • client lists
  • medical records
  • Visitors know whether a website is an SSL certificate. How? There are four visual clues:

  • Padlock to the left of a URL
  • https URL prefix instead of http
  • A trust seal
  • A green address bar (when an EV SSL certificate is issued)