SSL Simplified

SSL Basics

SSL in an acronym for Secure Socket Layer. SSL is primarily used to keep sensitive information safe via encryption while its being relayed online.

A Simple Example

Lets say you have an email sign up form.

After a visitor enters their information and subscribe, that same information is relayed to your email newsletter provider online.

During this relay of information, if your website has SSL, only your website and the email newsletter provider can see your subscriber's information. However, if your website does not have SSL, the subscriber's information may be visible to the outside world.

Partial Security

If your website does not have SSL but you use a website widget that does, only information entered on that widget will be secured once relayed.

  • Pros
    • Most website widgets with a good reputation come with SSL by default. Facebook, PayPal, Philantro - we all serve our widgets via SSL.
    • It's a cheaper alternative to purchasing an SSL Certificate for your entire website.
  • Cons
    • Your website visitors will only see the SSL status for your website, not the widgets you use.

Full Security

Serving your website via SSL is the best way to grow online.

Once you have SSL, you must take steps to ensure all elements on your website is served via SSL as well. If your website is secure but you have a widget on your website that is not secure, the web browser will warn the visitor that your website is not fully secure.

  • Pros
    • Website visitor data is safe on all areas of your website.
    • SSL has a positive effect on your search engine optimization.
  • Cons
    • Annual Fees might pose a challenge for some micro organizations.
    • Ensuring every element on your website is served via SSL.