You’ve registered your domain and your website is set up. Business is heading in the right direction and then all of the sudden you are asked if you have an SSL certificate. What is an SSL certificate? Why would I need an SSL certificate if I’m not selling anything?

What is an SSL certificate?

SSL, or Secure Sockets Layer, is a data security tool that was designed to keep communication over the internet safe whether you are browsing, buying products or services, or sharing information on your website. Data sent via an SSL connection is protected by a mechanism called “encryption” that scrambles the data in transit to prevent theft and tampering. In simpler terms, adding an SSL certificate to your website creates a safe connection for those kinds of activities.

Think of an SSL certificate as a giant windshield. This windshield protects your website and visitors from digital bugs, worms, and other web creatures. No website is too small to be attacked. Most interceptions on your website are done electronically. Those creepy crawly attackers have one goal in mind and that is to find vulnerabilities. When found, they begin attacking.

Should I have an SSL certificate on my website?

An SSL certificate works to protect your information. If you accept payments, you may have a merchant account, like Paypal set up. Upon making a purchase from your website, you will be re-directed to the merchants’ page which should be protected with an SSL certificate. If it is not, it is recommended to look into this.

Another reason you may want to add an SSL certificate to your website is if any of your pages are password protected. This includes WordPress or other database-driven websites where a user logs in to make changes. The World Wide Web is filled with bots seeking poorly protected pages to gain access to your website. You wouldn’t want to log in some day and see that your pages have been deleted or defaced.

Be sure to secure all your web forms. Some websites collect information for survey’s, quotes, questionnaires, job applications… the list goes on. If you collect any type of information, you want to be sure your clients are safe when they submit that information. Without an SSL certificate, some information may be intercepted. You definitely don’t want to take that chance. Securing online forms is a must.

Now that you understand what an SSL certificate, you might want to give us a call.

Why your website needs an SSL certificate…