What you need to know about SSL certificates

09/07/2018 by Fran Davison

SSL Certificates are represented by the green padlock in your web browser address bar. It’s what most people recognise but perhaps they don’t know what it means. Cue this blog post – ready to explain!

So, what are they?

An SSL certificate is a digital identity that works similar to a passport in that it verifies the organisation is who they say they are and it also means that any visitor-submitted data on the website will be securely encrypted. The most common way to identify a website that has an SSL Certificate installed is by viewing the url address bar. If the site has a valid and up-to-date certificate, the beginning of a web address will start ‘https://’. The ‘S’ stands for secure and shows that the organisation has undergone validation of their identity.

Why do you need it?

Having a strongly represented web security will ensure visitors to your site trust you and trust that information they provide is protected from prying eyes and cannot be intercepted on the way to your website. Organisational validation and security allows you to be more competitive in the marketplace by not only helping towards improving conversions through the improvement of Google rankings, but also by providing peace of mind and reassurance to your visitors. In 2014, Google implemented a change in their search ranking algorithms resulting in secure sites ranking higher.  

The encryption of information on your website ensures your site is more accessible and appealing to a visitor who will be made to feel safe.  

The team behind Google Chrome are also refining their approach towards secure sites, suggesting that all websites must have an SSL in order to be trusted by Google themselves. This ensures that no websites are going to be compromising any data.

GDPR and SSL certificates

According to Article 32 of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR); regulated information must be protected by “appropriate technical and organisation measures”, this would warrant encryption of personal data and would present a need for an SSL Certificate.

With the introduction of GDPR, it is more important than ever to take every step necessary in securing the personal data that is processed between a website’s visitors and the server. Making use of server-side encryption via an SSL Certificate is a great way to ensure a visitor’s privacy and sensitive information is protected.

What we recommend

Many globally recognised organisations, like GeoTrust and Symantecprovide SSL Certificates to purchase which give different validation options at different levels of encryption.

As a GeoTrust Partner, we recommend the following certificates to our customers. To help you make a choice – you can look at the comparisons here:

  • GeoTrust QuickSSL® Premium  
  • GeoTrust True BusinessID
  • GeoTrust True BusinessID with EV

Our most popular option is the GeoTrust QuickSSL® Premium SSL but if you need more security or desire more encryption then there are other packages available.

1. GeoTrust QuickSSL Premium

This is our lowest recommended tier of SSL Certificate and will provide you adequate security for your website. For most organisations this is sufficient and the one we recommend.

2. GeoTrust TrueBusiness ID

This is our second tier of SSL Certificate and provides you all of the benefits of the QuickSSL with further Organisational Validation for an increased level of trust for your visitors.

3. GeoTrust TrueBusiness ID with Extended Validation

This is our final tier of SSL Certificate and includes all of the above alongside further Extended Validation. This certificate is also known as the “Green bar” certificate as not only does it provide you with a green padlock on your website it also makes your visitors address bar green to display that your organisation has undergone a significant verification process to ensure your identity is valid.

If you need any further advice regarding securing your visitor’s privacy and information please let us know and we would be happy to help. Email us on support@mixd.co.uk.

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