What are SSL certificates What are SSL certificates...

SSL is an acronym for Secure Sockets Layer, an encryption technology that enables encrypted communication between between the client and the server. To create this secure connection, an SSL certificate is installed on the server side and creates an encrypted channel between the client and the server allowing for data such as credit card information, account login information or other types of sensative information to be transmitted without the problems of eavesdropping, data tampering, or message forgery. It is utilized by millions of online businesses and individuals to protect sensitive information from being stolen or tampered with by hackers and identity thieves. In essence, SSL allows for a private “conversation” just between the two intended parties.

Introduction


SSL Certificates have a key pair: a public and a private key. These keys work together to establish an encrypted connection. The certificate also contains the identity of the certificate/website owner.

A Certificate Signing Request (CSR) must be generated on your server for an SSL certificate to be issued. A private key and public key will be created on your server during this process. You will need to send the CSR data file to the SSL certificate issuer that contains the public key. The private key will be stored by you for installing the certificate at a later time. The CSR file sent to the SSL certificate issuer will be used to create a data structure to match your private key without compromising the key itself.

Once you receive the SSL Certificate, you install it on your server. You also install an intermediate certificate that establishes the credibility of your SSL Certificate by tying it to the CA’s root certificate. The instructions on how to install your certificate will be different depending on your server. Once you have unstalled the SSL certificate on your server, you can access a site securely by using https://www.domain.com. Depending on the type of of SSL certificate, it may also indicated by a padlock icon in web browsers or by a green address bar.

Types of SSL certificate


There are many different types of SSL certificates based on the number of domain names or subdomains being certifid, such as:

Single Domain – Single-domain SSL certificates provide security for one single domain name. It can only be used on one specific website. Example: https://www.yourdomain.com
Wildcard - Wildcard SSL certificates protect unlimited same-level subdomains of a domain. Example: https://www.yourdomain.com, https://mail.yourdomain.com.

and the level of validation needed, such as:

Domain Validation - Domain-validated SSL certificate is the most basic type of SSL. You only need to prove the ownership of the domain name by responding to an email sent to the admin contact email the domain listed in the Whois record. No company information is needed and no information is displayed other than encryption information within the Secure Site Seal. Domain-validated certificates are generally the least expensive and take from a few minutes to a few hours.
Organization Validation – Organization-validated SSL certificates not only validate the domain ownership but also the organization information included in the certificate such as company name, city and country. It gives enhanced visibility in who is behind the website and lets the customer know that they can trust you with their personal information. Organization-validated certificates provide a higher level of security and take 2-3 business days to process.
Extended Validation (EV) – Extended validation provides the highest level of security. The Certificate Authority (CA) checks the applicant's ownership of the domain name and it also conducts a THOROUGH investigation of the organization. The validation requires documents to verify the company's identity plus a series of additional steps and checks. This certificate is identified with a green address bar in the browser containing the company name and takes up to 10 business days to process.

What is a certificate authority (CA)?


A certificate authority is an entity which is trusted to issue digital certificates. Certification authorities verifies identity and legitimacy of company or individual that requested a certificate, and issues the certificate only when the verification is successful. We offer SSL certificates signed by Comodo, GeoTrust, RapidSSL, Thawte and Symantec Certificate Authorities. These certificate authorities are recognized by 99% of web browsers and are most trustworthy.

How to compare SSL Certificates between different certificate authorities?


Every certificate authority has different products, prices, SSL certificate features, and levels of customer satisfaction. Paying more does not necesarrily means that you are getting a better product. An SSL certificate from different CAs uses the exact same SSL encryption, so you are essentially paying for the brand.

What is browser compatibility?


Web browsers usually has a list of trsuted CAs which the browsers implicitly trust. During SSL handshake, the browser will attempt to verify signature against this list of ‘known good’ signers. If the CA is not in the list or if links in the certificate chain are missing, the browser will give a warning message that the website may not be trusted. We offer SSL certificates signed by Comodo, GeoTrust, RapidSSL, Thawte and Symantec Certificate Authorities. These certificate authorities are recognized by 99% of web browsers and are most trustworthy.