Misc

How to Secure Your Website: The Importance of SSL Certification

Anna Veitch
Author
Anna Veitch
Published
12th October 2021
Length
2 minute read

Securing your website is absolutely essential. Put it this way, you wouldn’t walk away from your home and leave the front door wide open, would you? Well, failing to secure your website is, essentially, the same thing. Without proper security, your data and that of your visitors is constantly at risk. Plus, you’re making yourself vulnerable to bugs and a whole host of other nasty bits and bobs.

Perhaps you run a simple, lowkey blog and you’re wondering why site security is even relevant to you. Well, the bottom line is, even if your site doesn’t generate any money or hold any sensitive information, failing to secure it – and as a result, being hacked – means your site can end up with huge losses of traffic, being suspended or even crashing. Plus, there’s always the risk of identity theft.

Have no fear, however, because there are a number of simple steps which you can take to ensure that your site is secure. The most important thing you can do is to gain SSL certification. So, let’s get into exactly what SSL certificates are, why they’re important and how you can get your site SSL certified.

 

 

So…SSL. What’s that?

Have you ever been browsing the web and noticed that some URL’s start with http:// whilst others start with https://? You may have found yourself wondering where exactly that extra “s” came from, and what exactly it means.

The bottom line, simply, is that the extra “s” you see in those URL’s means that your connection – and therefore any of your data -is secure and encrypted. That little “s” represents a technology known as SSL, or “Secure Sockets Layer”. Ultimately, websites with a https:// URL are SSL certified. But what does it mean to be SSL certified exactly?

SSL Certificates are small data files that established encrypted links between a web server and a browser. These encrypted links are essential to ensuring that any data passed between the server and browser remains private, which is vital to your security.

Why is SSL so important?

You don’t have to be a tech nut to know that your data is worth protecting. But you may often find yourself wondering what the fuss really is all about.

Well, the bottom line is that if you’re entering any information into a website – whether it be your email address or your bank information – that information can be intercepted if the website is not secure. The most common way that hackers will intercept that information is by placing an undetected listening programme on the host server. This programme functions by capturing information once it is being entered into the site and then passing that information over to the hacker. Pretty scary, right?

SSL functions by forming a connection between your browser and the server. When your browser recognises the SSL Certification, it will bind to the server. This secure connection means that only you and the website can access any of the information you share.

How do you obtain an SSL certificate?

In order for your SSL certificate to be valid, you need to obtain it from a certificate authority (CA), which means an outside organisation that generates and dishes out SSL certificates. The majority of CA’s will, of course, charge a fee for issuing an SSL certificate, although this isn’t always the case, with some platforms such as cloudfare offering options to obtain SSL certification for free.

Now, once your certificate has been issued, it now needs to be installed and then activated on the origin server of the website. Typically, most web hosting services can deal with this. Once it’s activated, the website will be able to load over an HTTPS chain, meaning all traffic to and from the website will be, wait for it… encrypted and secure!

 

We can sort the essential SSL certificate for you.

Well, it really is that simple. Getting SSL certification for your website is the most important aspect of ensuring your security. So, what’re you waiting for? Time to get certified!

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