What is SSL? – Full form and Types of SSL Certificates
By menaga | February 8, 2023
Introducing SSL – the ultimate shield for secure online transactions! Developed by Netscape in the early 90s, SSL is a protocol that creates a fortified connection between a web server and a browser. It ensures the safe and reliable transmission of sensitive information such as credit card numbers, social security numbers, and login credentials over the internet. SSL uses a combination of public key and private key encryption, as well as session keys, to safeguard the connection between a web server and a client system.
What is SSL? – Full Form & Definition
SSL Full Form – SSL stands for Secure Socket Layer is a protocol for establishing the encrypted links between the network. Websites that request the client’s personal information such as email address or payment information need to install the SSL certificate. SSL certificate creates trust by establishing a secured connection and there are many types of SSL certificates available. SSL is used for secured communication between a web browser and the web server. SSL turns the website address from HTTP to HTTPS, “s” stands for secure.
In addition, SSL has two key pairs one is the private key and another one is the public key. These keys work together to establish a secure connection. The private key is kept secured and the public key can be widely distributed via a certificate.
Gone are the days of insecure online transactions with SSL. It was the first commonly used framework to secure online transactions and eventually evolved to secure other applications such as authentication and encryption on the network transport layer. The SSL protocol has been replaced by the Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol, which is backward compatible with SSL 3.0.
- Encryption: To provide a high degree of privacy, SSL encrypted the data and then transmits the data across the web. When anyone tries to decrypt the data will see only the garbled mix of characters, it is impossible to decrypt.
- Authentication: SSL indicates an authentication process called a handshake between the two communicating devices to ensure both devices are who they claim to be.
- Data integrity: SSL also digitally signs data in order to provide data integrity, verify the data is not tampered with before reaching its intended receipt.
Certificate Authority (CA) is trusted by the third party which generates and issues the SSL certificate for your website.
The SSL protocol is constructed as a suite of protocols over TCP/IP, commonly referred to as the SSL Protocol Stack. It consists of two sub-layers – the first sub-layer contains the SSL Record Protocol, which handles data checking and encapsulation with appropriate headers for secure transfer under the TCP protocol. The second sub-layer contains the SSL Handshake Protocol, SSL Shift Cipher Protocol, and SSL Warning Protocol, which are responsible for maintaining a safe and secure connection to an application protocol such as HTTP.
Advantages of SSL
The advantages of SSL are numerous. It offers encryption to ensure the security of sensitive data, server authenticity to guarantee the transfer of data over the internet passes through proper servers, and trust, which leads to increased traffic on a site. Additionally, if a site includes online payments and allows memberships, information security is of utmost importance and SSL provides the perfect solution. Give your online transactions the protection they deserve with SSL.
Are you concerned about the security of your website’s data? One way to protect your visitors’ information is by using an SSL certificate, which encrypts data transmitted between your website and a user’s browser. Let’s Encrypt offers free SSL certificates that are just as secure as paid options from trusted certificate authorities.
About Let’s Encrypt:
Founded in 2014 by the Internet Security Research Group, a non-profit organization, Let’s Encrypt has the backing of major tech companies such as Mozilla, Cisco, and Facebook. In addition, their SSL certificates adhere to industry standards and are regularly audited by independent security firms.
While paid SSL certificates may offer more customer support, Let’s Encrypt provides extensive documentation and support resources on its website, as well as a community forum for assistance. Don’t compromise on security – consider using Let’s Encrypts free SSL certificates for your website.
Is Free SSL Provides Security?
So, is it worth using Let us Encrypts free SSL certificates for your website? Yes. Not only are they just as secure as paid options from trusted CAs, but they also offer a cost-effective solution for website owners. While they may not provide the same level of customer support, the extensive documentation and support resources available make them a viable option for many.
In addition, using an SSL certificate from a reputable CA can also improve your website’s search engine rankings and credibility with users. With all these benefits, it’s definitely worth considering using a free SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt for your website.
What is TLS?
TLS is an upgrade or successor protocol of SSL that gives an extra layer of protection for the website and works the same way as SSL by encrypting the data and information that transfer between network and server. So, in this way, hackers and third parties cannot see or look into the data you transmit which is more helpful in case of private and sensitive information like personal info, card details, and passwords.
Two ways of protocol
HTTP is Hypertext Transfer Protocol which is an application protocol layer that helps the user to communicate on the internet between a web browser and the web server to fetch or share the information or files on the web usually done or requested by the recipient through a web browser.
HTTPS is Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure which tells you if the website is secure or not. If the website is not secure then it will load in http and if secure, it will load in https with the help of Secure Socket Layer (SSL) or Transport Layer Security (TLS). Without this, the website will lose its credibility and trust among visitors. Also, the data or communication that passes through the internet from browser to server will not be secure and can pave way for hacking and leak of even sensitive data.
Purchasing an SSL certificate from a reputable certificate authority, such as Symantec, Global Sign, or Comodo, among others, ensures that the website’s identity has been verified by a trusted third party. These paid certificates offer varying levels of validation, with higher assurance levels indicating a more thorough verification process. Additionally, paid SSL certificates often provide additional perks not found with free options, such as a warranty to safeguard the website owner in case of issues with the certificate.
The process of verifying the identity of an organization before issuing an SSL certificate is known as SSL certificate validation. There are different levels of validation, each with varying degrees of scrutiny and investigation.
Types Of SSL Certificates:
1. Extended Validation Certificates (EV SSL)
2. Organization Validation Certificates (OV SSL)
3. Domain Validated Certificates (DV SSL)
4. Wildcard SSL certificates
5. Multi-domain SSL Certificate (MDC)
6. Unified Communication Certificate (UCC)
ALSO READ: How SSL Makes a Difference in SERP?
Extended Validation Certificates:
The highest-ranking and the most expensive SSL certificate is an Extended Validation certificate. This SSL certificate installed displays padlock, HTTP, business name, and country on the browser address bar. Extended Validation Certificate requires the owner to go through the standardized identity verification process to confirm that they are authorized legally to the exclusive right of domains. Furthermore, this SSL certificate is used for high-profile website applications for assurance such as processing logins, collecting data, and online payments.
Organization Validation Certificates:
Organization Validation Certificates are the primary purpose of certification. The CA will contact the organization’s SSL certificate requirements and do some investigation. Also, these Certificates will contain the organization’s name and address which brings trust for users than Domain Validation Certificate.
Domain Validated Certificates have low assurance and minimum encryption, it is suitable for blogs or information sites. Moreover, the validation process is simple, the domain owner needs only to prove domain ownership by modifying the DNS records or just sending emails to CA. This display only HTTPS and padlock with no business name display.
Wildcard SSL certificates:
Wildcard SSL certificates are for a single domain and also for its multiple subdomains. It ensures that if you buy an SSL certificate for one domain you can use it for all the subdomains. Comparatively, Wildcard domains are cheaper than purchasing several single-domain SSL.
Multi-domain SSL Certificate:
A Multi-domain SSL certificate can secure many different domain names and subdomains using a single certificate which helps you to save time and money.
Unified Communication Certificate:
A Unified Communications Certificate is also considered a multi-domain SSL certificate. UCC was initially designed for Microsoft Exchange and a live communication server. However, now any website owners use the certificate to allow multiple domain names to get secured in a single certificate. UCC is organizationally validated and displays a padlock on the browser.
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