Do you need an SSL Certificate for your website?

You may have heard of SSL Certificates and wondered if this is something you need for your website. SSL stands for Secure Socket Layers. This is a measure that helps to ensure the security of transactions on your website. Is this something that you really need or is it just something that only very large businesses require? In this article we’ll be looking at who actually needs this.

How does an SSL Certificate safeguard a website?

You have probably noticed that many websites where you shop have a padlock icon in a visible place. This is an indication that the site has an SSL Certificate. It reassures shoppers that they can safely make purchases, provide their credit card or PayPal information and not worry about their personal information being stolen.

SSL padlock

Online fraud, identity theft and hacking is now a widespread problem. This is not something that only larger websites have to worry about. In fact, many hackers target smaller and more vulnerable businesses. An SSL Certificate is actually a data file that provide a cryptography key for a website. In other words, it creates a secure code to ensure that information is kept secure. SSL is used to keep logins, data transfers, credit card transactions and other sensitive information from getting into the wrong hands.

There are several types of SSL Certificates. The level of protection that you need will determine what kind of certificate you should get. More sophisticated certificates provide a higher level of data encryption. They also guarantee a higher level of financial security. Different types of certificates guarantee your security up to different levels. In this manner, the certificate serves as a type of insurance against security breaches. It greatly reduces the chances of anything going wrong, and even if it does you are protected if you have the certificate!

Who needs SSL Security Certificates?

Does everyone need an SSL Certificate? If you have a personal blog or website where you just talk about your favorite hobby, you probably don’t need one. If you do sell something on your website but redirect all transactions to PayPal or another third-party payment processor, you may not need one either. In such cases, the transactions will be secure because PayPal (or whatever processor is being used) provides the necessary security.

However, if you store credit card or any type of personal information on your site, it’s a good idea to have an SSL Certificate. Furthermore, if you have a membership site or any type of website where visitors must log in using a password, it’s recommended that you get this type of protection. Whether there are financial transactions or not, people’s personal information can be at risk if there’s a log-in process.

People often use the same passwords on multiple websites, even though this is a very unwise practice. This means that if someone’s password is stolen when they log on to your site, it could potentially cause them big problems on other sites. While this may not be, strictly speaking, your fault, you are better off securing your site so this is never an issue.

Having an SSL Certificate is also very good for business. It gives your site a more professional look and reassures visitor that they can shop from you safely. In fact, if you have a website that sells anything and there’s no SSL Certificate, people may get a security warning, which will cause them to distrust your website.

In the long run, it’s a small investment to make and you should consider it part of the cost of doing business online. It’s the equivalent of getting a good lock and an alarm system for a brick and mortar business.

Where to get an SSL Certificate

You can purchase an SSL Certificate from a variety of trusted sources. If you do a search, you may become confused as there are many choices advertised at many different prices. There is also an advantage to using an SSL Certificate that many people have heard of. This makes people more likely to trust your site.

GeoTrust SSL

QuickSSL Premium Certificates, which is issued by GeoTrust, offers several key features. Among others:

  • Offers $100,000 in protection.
  • Unlimited free reissues.
  • Compatible with mobile devices.
  • Up to 2048-bit encryption.
  • Secures access through “https” which is more secure than “http”.

You can get a QuickSSL Premium SSL Certificate for $59.95 for one year. There is currently a special offer where you can get it for as little as $89.95 for two years.

For more about obtaining QuickSSL Premium Certificates from iPage, visit http://www.ipage.com/product/ssl_certificate.bml

An SSL Certificate makes your site safer

There are good reasons to get an SSL Certificate if you do any type of commerce online. It’s a good habit to get into if you want to build a successful business. A single incident, such as getting your site hacked, can be catastrophic – not only financially but in terms of the trust your customers have in your and your business.

An SSL Certificate is a relatively inexpensive way to have a high degree of security for your website. It also shows visitors that you are aware of security issues and that you run a safe and professional business.