The Need for SSL in E-Commerce

Go Daddy SSL Certificates

You don’t have to be all that familiar with the internet to be aware of online credit card fraud and identity theft. Just like you, consumers grow more weary with each publicized security breach. This added consciousness results in more shoppers who are reluctant to provide their credit card details online. Unfortunately, this reality also has a direct impact on any business with an online storefront. Consumer confidence is declining rapidly but you can help maintain it by incorporating SSL into your site.

What is SSL?
SSL (Security Sockets Layer) is a security protocol used to enable secure communications online. With an SSL certificate, you get the benefit of a proven method that creates an encrypted tunnel between the customer’s web browser on the client side, and your website on the server side. Therefore, instead of traveling over the insecure internet in vulnerable plain-text, credit card numbers are encrypted and scrambled so they can’t be read by intruders. Right now, 128-bit encryption is the standard for SSL certificates as previous versions have been rendered insecure. The algorithm used to form this security level of security is virtually impossible to break, ensuring that the communications between you and your customers are safe.

Where to Get a Certificate?
In order to get an SSL certificate, you must go through a company known as a CA or Certificate Authority. Verisign is the most popular and trusted authority with GeoTrust and Thawte making up the next reputable options. At the basic level, all SSL certificates provide the same type of security. A 128-bit certificate from GeoTrust will encrypt the communications between the server and client just as one from VeriSign would. This is good news for smaller needs as basic certificates are more affordable and provide adequate security. You will find that the price soars when adding on additional services that you may or may not need. Because some authorities will try to sell you whatever they can, it is important to do some investing before you go spending beyond your requirements.

Installing Your Certificate
In most cases, installing an SSL certificate is relatively easy regardless of your technical abilities. Most hosting providers offer certificates as add-on products and generally provide guidance for installing it. This process is usually a simple one that can be performed through an advanced control panel interface on your own. If not, a good host will be more than happy to install the certificate for you. Once installed, the certificate is immediately activated and starts protecting your website transactions right way. Do yourself a favor by finding a provider that allows you to incorporate your own certificate should you choose not to purchase it from them.

Keep the Internet Criminals at Bay
There are some features your e-commerce site can do without but an SSL certificate isn’t one of them. Consumers grow more conscious about shopping online everyday as internet fraud is at a record high. Gather some information about the most reliable certificate authorities and choose one that can provide the best level of security for your site. Remember this: your inventory will collect a lot of dust if no one feels safe purchasing it.

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