Yes, you do!
Recently, browsers (Google Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari) have started giving users warnings when a website is not secure (when it doesn’t have https:// at the start of the site name.
You might have seen alerts in your browser bar:
Or messages like this:
If you have a website, you will need to add an SSL certificate to secure your site (changing your website address from http://example.com.au to https://example.com.au). In the future, https page encryption will be a standard requirement for all web pages. Ultimately, this will make the internet a safer place for you and visitors to your website.
What exactly is an SSL certificate?
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, which is the backbone of a secure internet. It provides privacy, critical security and data integrity for both your website and your visitors’ personal information.
The main reason you need SSL is to keep sensitive information sent across the Internet encrypted, so that only the intended recipient can understand it. Any computer in between you and the server can see your credit card numbers, usernames and passwords, and other sensitive information if it is not encrypted with an SSL certificate. When an SSL certificate is used, the information becomes unreadable to everyone except for the server you are sending the information to. This protects it from hackers and identity thieves.
Another very good reason for making sure your site has an SSL certificate is that Google have said that they will boost you up in the search rankings if you use HTTPS, which benefits your SEO. And if you don’t have one, your website may drop in ranking.
What do I need to do?
If you manage your own website, you need to contact your web hosting provider and they will organise the certificate for you – there will be a small cost involved. Or, contact your web designer/developer and ask them to organise it for you. There are also some free certificate providers, such as Let’s Encrypt. The SSL certificate will need to be renewed periodically.
If you have any questions, give us a call on 1300 742 734.