Whenever you choose to open up your website browser and head to a website, whether it is Google, Facebook, or a company’s website, the data that is sent between your web browser and the website you are visiting is secured with a protocol that encrypts the information and keeps it safe from prying eyes and hackers. This protocol is called an HTTPS.
What Does HTTPS Mean?
HTTPS stands for Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure and is known as the standard for online security across the world wide web.
If you were to visit a website that is not protected by an HTTPS, any information you send over the connection can be clearly seen. This includes your IP address, contact information, and even payment information. You can see this information for yourself. If you look (generally in the upper left of the web browser) the url will say “HTTP//:domain.com” rather than the secured “HTTPS://domain.com”.
Why Banks, Businesses, and Everyday Webmasters Use HTTPS
For websites that utilize sensitive communications or aggregate user data, such as physical address locations, banking information, and contact information, HTTPS is necessary as it prevents others from seeing, utilizing, or hacking into the connection to steal sensitive data. Essentially, HTTPS is what makes online payments, online banking, and contact forms safe to use. Beyond this, here are the following benefits that HTTPS has over unsecured connections.
- It Protects Against Website Code Tampering. If your website’s communications are unprotected, any individual with coding knowledge can inject ads into your website’s pages, install malware and track your visitors, and even steal sensitive information from unsuspecting people. This can easily be done with your cookies, images, and HTML coding scripts; but HTTPS protects against this.
- It Helps with Google Indexing. Google is urging the entire internet to move towards a secured connection, and so if a website comes up that is equal to another but the other is unprotected, the protected one will always rank higher. Why? Google is putting more emphasis on protected and secured websites as it only wants to show secure websites to those who use the search engine. I think by now, you understand why. Learn how SEO affects your Google Rankings.
- It Is Required for Accelerated Mobile Webpages. If you are a mobile web user and do a lot of searches through Google, you may have noticed the little lightning bolts that appear next to search results. This are accelerated mobile pages that only appear as search results if they have an SSL certificate enabled.
Is your website protected by an HTTPS? Now, more than ever, it’s essential that you protect the information that your website users share with you. If you don’t already have secured your website, it’s time to do so!