What is an SSL Certificate?
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, an encryption technology that creates a connection between your web server and your visitors' web browser. This allows private information to be transmitted without the problems of eavesdropping, data tampering, and message forgery. To enable SSL on a website, you will need to get an SSL Certificate that identifies you, and then install it on your web server. SSL is the backbone of a secure Internet and it protects your sensitive information as it travels across the world's computer networks. SSL is essential for protecting your website, even if it doesn't handle sensitive information like credit cards. It provides privacy, critical security and data integrity for both your websites and your users' personal information.
Why do I need SSL?
The primary reason SSL is used is to keep sensitive information sent across the Internet encrypted , so only the intended recipient can access it. This is important because the information you send on the Internet is passed from computer to computer to get to the destination server. Any computer between you and the server can see credit card numbers, usernames and passwords, and other sensitive information if it is not encrypted with an SSL certificate. SSL helps prevent attackers or intrusive companies such as ISPs from tampering with the data sent between your websites and your users’ browsers. When an SSL certificate is used, the information becomes unreadable to everyone except the intended recipient's server.
SSL Provides Authentication
In addition to encryption, a proper SSL certificate also provides authentication. This means you can be sure that you are sending information to the right server and not to an imposter trying to steal your information. The only way to prevent hacking and to keep your information safe is to get an SSL Certificate from a trusted SSL provider.
SSL Provides Trust
Web browsers give visual cues, such as a lock icon or a green bar, to make sure visitors know when their connection is secured. This means that they will trust your website more when they see these cues and will be more likely to engage with you. It also protects against phishing attacks. A phishing email is an email sent by a criminal who tries to impersonate your website, to steal information.
SSL is required for PCI Compliance
In order to accept credit card information on your website, you must pass certain audits that show you are complying with the Payment Card Industry (PCI) standards. One of the requirements is properly using an SSL Certificate.
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