What Is SSL? (& SSL Certificate Types)

When making a website, you have to know all the security features you should have when doing it. SSL is a security feature, and you need to have one on your website, especially if you hold any information related to your site members or vital information such as banking data. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. It is a security technology that creates an encrypted link between a server and a client. A server here means a website; the client can be a browser, a mail server, or a mail client such as Outlook. 

What Is SSL?

SSL is a security technology. It is a protocol for servers and web browsers that ensures that data transmitted between the two is private. This is done using an encrypted connection that connects the server and browser.
SSL certificates are small data files that create a cryptographically encrypted connection between a web server and a browser. This connection ensures that all data transmitted between the web server and the browser remains private. Let’s say you have a form to fill out and submit; a hacker could intercept the information you entered on an unsafe website.

How Does SSL Work?

SSL carries high importance because it provides secure transmission of sensitive information such as credit card numbers, social security numbers, and login credentials. If a website has a membership option, it means that the website carries the information of its members. So it is important to check if the website has an SSL when signing in for a website. Yet, how can you know if a website has SSL? It is pretty easy to see. When you take a look at the address bar, you will see that it writes ‘https.’ This means that the website has SSL. If you only see ‘http,’ it means that the website does not have one. 

What happens if the website does not have SSL? The data is sent between browsers and servers in plain text. It means that the information is clearly visible. So, without a Security Sockets Layer, a malicious hacker can see the information being sent between the server and the client, get it, and use it for malicious purposes. 

Of course, SSL is not just a security software that protects the data on your website. It is also a security protocol. A protocol describes how the algorithms in their area should be applied. In this case, the SSL security protocol determines the encryption of both the connection and the data being transmitted. 

Why Is SSL Important?

Why Is SSL Important?

As we have stated before, it is important because it secures the transmission of sensitive information. Every day, thanks to SSL, millions of people make online transactions without a problem. We have mentioned that it is important for banks. For example, when making a money transaction, you enter valuable information such as your credit card number, account number, etc. The same thing can be said for online shopping as well. You may not be aware of it, but your information could have ended in the wrong hands if it wasn’t an SSL security protocol. 

All browsers are suitable to work with an SSL. However, not all servers (websites) have it. If you want your website to secure the information inside, learn how to get an SSL certificate.

What Is an SSL Certificate?

An SSL certificate is a certificate you need to secure your website. It is installed on the hosting that your website is on, in other words, your server. After you get a certificate, your website that is working on the http protocol will start to work on a more secure protocol, which is https. SSL protocol transmits the data between the server and the client provided by 128-bit or 256-bit international standards. However, when buying an SSL certificate, you should keep in mind that they don’t provide security for all of your website or software. So it only provides security for the data your visitors upload to your website, which means that the connection is secured.

There are three types of SSL validation certificates; Domain Validation Certificates, Organization Validation Certificates, and Extended Validation Certificates.

SSL Certificates

Domain Validation Certificate

It is an SSL certificate that provides 2048-bit encryption for websites. Domain Validation Certificate (DV) is also known as the Standard SSL Certification. It does not require a document when getting it. You can also find free domain validation certificates as well. You only need to prove that you have control of your domain name. It is the most basic certification type. When you get this certificate, you can see the green padlock sign on your website’s address bar. It shows that the website is secure.

Organization Validation Certificate

Organization Validation Certificate is the type of certificate that only registered companies and businesses that are legally accountable. In order to get this certificate, you need more than proving your control over the domain name. You also have to prove that your company or business is registered legally. This certificate is suitable for businesses that collect data from the public. It is called Organization Validation Certificate (OV) because individuals cannot get this certificate. Only businesses and organizations are allowed to have it. 

Extended Validation Certificate

Extended Validation Certificate

These certificates protect users from handing out their data to fake websites that can be owned by malicious people. It is also known as EV Certificate and shows a green address bar when visiting a website with an EV Certificate. It shows that the website has the maximum amount of data security and builds trust for the visitors. To get this type of certificate, you need to meet the requirements for both the DV and OV Certificates. So, it is only available for organizations and businesses. 

types of SSL certificates

Types of SSL Certificates

Another factor that will affect the type of SSL certificate you choose is how many SSL certificates are required for the number of domains. You can find the four different types of certificates below.

Wildcard SSL Certificate

Wildcard SSL certificates protect your website URL and numerous subdomains. This certificate type protects subdomains at your specified level. Simply add an asterisk in the subdomain field to the left of the common name. Wildcard certificates secure the website like regular SSL certificates.

Unified Communications SSL Certificate

Unified Communications SSL certificates are the fastest SSL security solution. Companies using Microsoft Exchange and OCS will secure up to 100 domains and subdomains, three domains by default, by verifying company information with a single SSL certificate.

Multi-Domain SSL Certificate

Multi-Domain SSL; It is a special type of SSL certificate you can use on multiple websites. You can verify all the domain names you own with a single certificate and secure all your domain names from a single place by defining SSL. Using Multi-Domain SSL saves money and time without buying SSL certificates for each domain name separately.

Single Domain SSL Certificate

Single Domain SSL protects a domain name. Don’t forget that you cannot use it to safeguard subdomains or a completely different environment.

Conclusion

We have covered what SSL is and why it carries such importance for websites, especially with membership and data collecting. We have also included what an SSL certificate is and mentioned the three types of certificates. Each certificate has different purposes and can be used by certain owners. 

Frequently Asked Questions About

SSL is needed to secure sensitive information when transmitting them.

If your website has a login option, then you need to have an SSL certificate. Or your visitors’ information can be stolen easily.

Get a host with a dedicated IP address. Then buy a certificate and activate it. Install the certificate on your website. Lastly, update your website to use HTTPS.

According to statistics, SSL is a beneficial process for SEO in terms of Google algorithm.

Your website URL should say “https://.” This means that you have a valid SSL.

Cihat Kısa

Posts: 18

I was born in a city in Turkey called Konya. When I was six, we have moved to Istanbul. Before moving to Istanbul, my childhood dream was to develop computer programs, websites, or games. After a few years, I started designing some websites and then learned web development to create something that... Read More

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  1. Nicholas Fields
    Nicholas Fields

    SSL certificates are essential for secure online communication. They provide encryption and authentication, making sure data is kept safe. However, they can be difficult to set up and manage. My suggestion is to use a trusted provider to ensure your SSL certificate is installed correctly.