SSL Certificates are little data records that digitally tie a cryptographic key to a company’s credentials. When SSL certificate is generated and installed on a website, it secures the communication between websites and its users. SSL uses https and SSL certificate to create a secure, encrypted data tunnel between web server and a user’s browser. Encryption makes the data unreadable for others. Only the initiating user and webserver can read it.
Normally, SSL, https, and certificates are utilized to secure the sensitive data transactions like credit card information, username and passwords, financial transactions, etc. Moreover, there is a raising concern of privacy of user data. Now most major websites like Twitter, Facebook, Google use SSL certificates to secure user data over the network. Nobody can eavesdrop on your data sent to their servers. Your uploads, searches are private until they reach their network.
Now we know what is SSL certificate and their purpose. Let’s look at how do SSL certificate work.
SSL works by stringing together following information in SSL certificate:
A domain name, server name or hostname, Identity of Company (i.e. organization name) and its location. It also ties cryptographic keys to secure the data exchange to the company’s identity. These details in SSL certificate are verified by Certificate Authority which issued them.
It is easy to obtain an SSL and install it on your website. However, depending on the sort of SSL Certificate applied for, the organization will undergo various levels of reviewing before the SSL certificate can be issued. After installation users are directed to https://www.yourwebsite.com. This advises the web browser (Mozilla, Internet Explorer, Chrome, or Opera) to establish the secure protected connection with this particular website. Once a protected connection is built up, all web activity between the web server and user’s web browser will be secure. Browser informs users a site is SSL secure. It does so by means of a few obvious trust pointers.
In case of standard SSL certificate, you can see the locked padlock sign on the address bar.
Wildcard SSL certificates secures your website URL and an unlimited number of its subdomains. For example, instead of buying 3 standard certificates, a single Wildcard certificate can secure www.yourwebsite.com, member.yourwebsite.com, and store.website.com.
Wildcard certificates secure the common name and all subdomains at the level you specify when you submit your request. Just add an asterisk (*) in the subdomain area to the left of the common name. For example, *.yourwebsite.com .
EV (Extended Validation) SSL certificates are the highly trusted SSL certificates. They provide the highest level of encryption. They are issued to organizations only after thorough review as per EV guidelines. The Extended Validation identity check requires the candidate to demonstrate exclusive ownership of the website domain name, prove its lawful, operational and physical presence. And also to demonstrate the organization itself has requested the issuance of the Certificate.
EV SSL Certificates are a seal of guarantee that the website and its owner organization have undergone an intensive, standardized, identity check process. Hence, a website using EV SSL Certificate will bear a highly visible green indicator directly on the browser address bar. It will have the organization name visible on it.
It is all about user experience. A great user experience, offering them reason to trust your business is crucial. EV SSL certificate provides highest level of security for data on the network. And it also provides trust and emphasize security in a basic, obvious manner that website users can both see and comprehend.
When users see trusted connection to website and realize that providing any data to the website is secure, they are more likely to make transactions. And with confidence. Moreover, website users will feel more secure when purchasing on a site that has been checked and verified EV SSL Certificate. Because it makes it known that they are dealing with someone who has a real physical facility, warehouse, offices. It helps companies and financial institutions build up online trust and prove their credibility as real entities. This results into customer conversions and loyalty.
SSL certificate is one of the ranking factors in SEO.
So when you ask what is SSL certificate? It can be a game changer in more ways than one.