+44 (0) 141 308 10 29

SSL: Why it’s important and why your website should use it

We all like to think we know the basics of online security, particularly when it comes to shopping on other people’s websites and looking after our data. But is your own website offering as safe an environment as it could be to those who are entrusting you with their personal details and payment information?

If your site could be doing more to protect your visitors, you might want to consider SSL certification, particularly if you’re selling online or using your website for data capture. And now’s the time to get started, as from this year, Google will be actively penalising websites without SSL.

What is SSL?

SSL sounds familiar to a lot of people, but you might not be able to place exactly what is does – Secure Sockets Layer is an industry standard device used by millions of websites in order to establish trust with their customers. It is a method of securing the data that is transmitted over the internet from the visitor’s computer (client) to the destination servers (host), such as passwords, or Personally Identifiable Data. All data passed between this connection remains private – sensitive information is encrypted by inserting random characters into the original message, ensuring that only the intended server is able to read it, and making it virtually impossible for hackers to steal. You’ll know when a website is utilising SSL protection, as there is a small padlock displayed on the left-hand side of the website address in the url bar, the ‘http’ portion of the address becomes ‘https’, and the website is labelled by Google as ‘Secure.’

Why do I need SSL?

If you’re running any kind of professional website for your business, SSL is highly recommended, and for eCommerce operations, it’s a must. You need to be sure that you’re keeping customer information safe, and know that whatever is being sent over the internet is going to the right server.

Having SSL is also a recognisable symbol for many internet users and online shoppers, and will signal quality assurance that you are a trusted brand that has been verified by a third party. Knowing that your website takes security and data protection seriously is a must for anyone providing you with their personal information, and SSL will give them the peace of mind that it is entirely safe to use your website, submit their details and complete transactions. And it’s not just a positive reinforcement with a nice label – as of 2017, Google will begin actively displaying websites without SSL certificates as ‘Not secure,’ which is not the first impression you want to be giving as soon as someone opens up your site.

How do I become SSL certified?

You can acquire an SSL Certificate via an array of vendors and re-sellers, with major names being those such as Comodo, Thawte, Geotrust, etc. We recommend that your contact your hosting provider to ensure you order the correct certificate best suited your needs.

The process of installing your certificate varies according to your hosting solution – if you use a single server, cloud solution, CDN and so forth, installing the SSL certificate can be a daunting task, as there are likely to be dependencies around the website, like code or database updates. Luckily, the My Server Guy techops team is on hand to assist with the complete installation of SSL.

Once installation is complete, you can test your website certificate and configuration at: https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/

Ensure data integrity with SSL services at My Server Guy

When your site needs SSL, but you’re not confident on how to go about it, My Server Guy is the comprehensive option for advice, certificate acquiring, and installation.

To find out more about why My Server Guy is the solution to your SSL needs, and the best option for boosting your overall website performance, book a free one hour consultation for a no-obligation look at your SSL requirements or talk to us on 0141 308 10 29.