This month, Google Chrome is receiving an update that could help or hurt your website's rank. The version 68 update is marking all websites without SSL as Not Secure. According to Emily Schechter, Chrome Security Product Manager the intent is to create a uniformly secure browsing experience across all websites. This feature is expected to be taken even further soon, with the removal of the 'green lock' icon on secure websites; Implying all websites should be secure by default.
What Is SSL?
Today, when visiting your bank or favorite online e-commerce store you should see the familiar icon. This 'green lock' always precedes 'https://' in the address bar, to let you know this site can handle your financial information. This is what technology experts are referring to when they say SSL, but what exactly does it mean?
Imagine talking to your friend in a crowded room. This is how the internet has functioned almost since its inception, everyone shares the same room while talking. The apparent issue is that while sharing confidential information, someone else might overhear it. Building separate rooms for everyone would be costly and impractical; We need a more elegant solution. You and your friend talk in that crowded room but, using a secret made-up language only the two of you know. You have a different language for each friend, so they cannot understand each other while you can understand all of them. This concept is what we call Secure Socket Layer or SSL.
When should 'https://' be used?
The debate was both brief and swift. Experts across the world agree: use SSL every time. Aside from the obvious privacy benefits, there is another perk to using Secure Socket Layer. For a website to use 'https://' they must obtain a certification from a verified source. This certification proves the identity of the site you are accessing much like an ID card. Scammers get less wiggle room to operate as they cannot copy the certificate without access to the source.
In addition to the full range of advantages above, implementing SSL has never been more accessible or cost-effective. Most hosting providers offer one-click setup for SSL certification. Let's Encrypt, a free and automated service implemented by ISRG, is the primary Certificate Authority used by many website providers. These free, straightforward services make SSL friendly to all levels of technical skill and economic class; Are you making use of it for your website?
Why should I use Let's Encrypt?
If being free, automatic and secure isn't incentive enough don't fret, there's more! To say that the search engine titan Google is rewarding the use of SSL wouldn't be entirely accurate. Instead, the use of an insecure website is now punished. The position your website appears in when looking for it online is called ranking. Use of SSL is a factor in deciding what rank your site has, along with speed. Making your site harder to find is just the beginning — now it will be labeled 'Not Secure' for all visitors to see. Fortunately, Your Computer Expert offers SSL on all provided websites at no extra cost. Find out more today!