SSL encryption for websites becomes a necessity


    by Stuart Fuller (CentralNic)

    Starting from early July this year, Google is further penalising websites that do not use SSL certificates by categorising them as “Not Secure” as part of the roll-out of their Chrome 68 browser update.

    With over two-thirds of all Internet users now using Google Chrome as their default browser, the change could lead to significant issues for any organisation that has not yet adopted HTTP encryption for their website. The only way to avoid having your website highlighted as “Not Secure” is to purchase and install an SSL certificate to your site.

    Many organisations still neglect to take the most basic steps to protect their own site security and the security of their customers by using SSL encryption. Historically, SSL was only used to protect the transmission of personal and financial data between the web user and the website owner. However, with the increase in the sophistication and volume of cyberattacks, all websites should now adopt data encryption which is the core reason for the change in the way Google, and second most-used Internet Browser, Mozilla’s Firefox have changed how they treat and rank websites that offer no protection to users.

    These changes at Google make it essentially compulsory for site owners to use the protection of SSL certificates. BrandShelter now supports its customers with a range of SSLs to cover every type of website.

    It is estimated that around two-thirds of all websites today do not use SSL, which not only presents a risk to website owners and users but will also start to impact search ranking results. In the battle to be number one in search rankings, opportunities to take a commanding position over your competitors are few in number. This change is a major opportunity to catapult your website to the top of search engine ranks. Ensuring the security of your website not only benefits your brand, and your site users, but now can have a dramatic result in website traffic.

    The significant change to how websites are treated should not be a surprise to anyone - web developers, content owners or brand holders. Google has communicated this update to how they would treat unencrypted websites for over two years and this latest launch of their browser, was designed to highlight the insecurities in connections rather than websites that fully conformed to industry security and encryption standards. Google’s move has removed any ambiguity from the minds of organisations by saying that all websites should be protected by SSL. The message for all website owners is now very simple. Every online property they own should be protected by SSL.