Why Invalid SSL Certificates Hurt Business
November 11th, 2013 By: Tavis J. Hampton

SSL or Secure Sockets Layer is an encryption technology that can make sure a user’s connection to a website is secure. When a website is secure, it will use the HTTPS protocol rather than HTTP, and the user’s browser will verify that the certificate authority is trusted and authentic. Not all websites need SSL. If your business uses its website for information purposes only or to link to/embed social media content, SSL may be superfluous. If however, you are collecting user data and/or initiating financial transactions, SSL is necessary.

When SSL works correctly, it provides users with an added layer of security beyond simple password authentication, and it also helps them trust your website, which boosts your company’s reputation. When SSL does not work correctly, it can have the opposite effect, causing some users to literally leave your site altogether.

With growing concerns about privacy on the web, encryption may be more important to users than ever. An expired or unsigned SSL certificate can lead to mistrust on the part of the user, especially since some browsers will stop a user in their tracks when a certificate is suspicious. No longer do they just receive a popup warning. Google Chrome, for example, will display a full-page warning and may prevent the user from viewing the site at all without several attempts to bypass it.

Imagine a customer coming to your site to spend a lot of money but then receiving such a warning. Some will simply walk away and find another store. Therefore, it is imperative that you make sure your SSL is authentic, works for all browsers and is updated when necessary.

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