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What is a Secure Website?

Secure websites use techniques such, encryption and authentication, to protect exchanges of information between the websites and their visitors. The most commonly used protocol for web security is TLS, or Transport Layer Security, which is commonly referred to as SSL, or Secure Sockets Layer, the predecessor to TLS.

 

How Can You Tell If A Website Is Secure?

There are two things you can check by looking at the address of the website in your browser. If the web address begins with “https” instead of “http” and there is a closed padlock before the start of the https then the the site is secure.

 

What is HTTPS?

Hypertext transfer protocol secure (HTTPS) is the secure version of HTTP, which is the main method used to send information between a web site visitor and the website.

 

Why Bother With SSL?

Every website on the Internet should be secured with HTTPS, not just those carrying out financial transactions.Here are some reasons why:

  • Increase Visitor Trust: By displaying a closed padlock and https:// in the browser’s address bar.
  • Improve Performance: Modern https:// improves the speed at which you website loads in the visitors browser. This is great for the visitor and helps to improve your website’s ranking in the search engines.
  • Higher Search Ranking: Search engines, such as Google, favor HTTPS websites and may give you a slight lift in rankings.
  • Better Security: Encrypting your traffic with SSL ensures nobody can hack your users’ data.
  • Compliance: SSL is a key component in PCI compliance (Payment Card Industry compliance).

How Can I Make My Website SSL Secure?

Many good website hosting companies will issue a SSL certificate for your website, either free of charge or at low cost. So first check with them.

Alternative you can use an organisation such as Let’s Encrypt from which you can obtain a free certificate suitable for most websites. However you will still need to the help of your web designer or hosting company as part of the process is being able to show that you have control either over your domain or your website.

 

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