Do you see a “your website is not secure” message when entering your website? SSL certificate issues are one the most prevalent causes of website downtime. They tend to expire, leaving your website vulnerable and scaring away visitors with menacing Google notifications. Lately, Google has been paying a lot of attention to security, and while you could get away without an SSL certificate several years ago, today your website is almost inaccessible without one. Good news, the SSL certificate problem is easy to solve and possible to avoid, and I’ll show you how to do that in this article.
What is SSL and why do you need it for your website
SSL stands for Secure Socket Layer, which is a security technology that provides encrypted communication between two systems. In other words, it’s a way to add an extra layer of protection between your website and any potential hackers or malicious software. It protects your visitors’ information, makes Google like you and It’s also a great way to show customers that you take their security seriously and are doing everything in your power to protect their information.
Why Does Your Website Need SSL?
In today’s digital world, data breaches have become increasingly common. A recent report from Cisco estimates that there were over 2 billion records compromised by cyber criminals in 2018 alone! SSL certificate helps ensure that any data collected on your site (like customer payment information) remains safe and secure. Additionally, many web browsers now display a warning or worse, block the access if they detect that a website isn’t using SSL encryption. Even if browsers allow visitors to enter your site, they may be less likely to visit it if they see that warning message.
How Do I Get SSL Encryption For My Website?
Many hosting providers offer basic plans that include free SSL certificates. They should be able to quickly fix it for you with minimum wait time and no extra fees. If you notice that your website shows a “not secure” warning , reach out to your hosting provider and in most cases they’ll help you.
If for whatever reason, your hosting provider is unable to assist you, you can use this detailed guide from Hubspot to try solving the problem yourself, or reach out to us at Black Cat Web Studio.
Tips for keeping your SSL certificate updated
Every SSL certificate has an expiration date. They used to last up to five years, now publicly issued certificates are valid for a maximum of 398 days. Unlike your Netflix subscription, SSL certificates don’t renew themselves. That responsibility typically falls on the business owner or the one who maintains the website. When your SSL certificate expires browsers display a warning page, practically blocking visitors from entering your website.
Here are a few tips to keep on how to avoid an expired SSLcertificate:
1. Set Reminders
Setting reminders is essential when it comes to updating your SSL Certificate. Schedule a reminder a few weeks prior the expiration date to avoid downtime.
2. Know Where To Go
It’s important to know who is responsible for keeping track of and updating your SSL certificate, as well as where the certificate is located. Who manages it? Does your hosting service provides it? Who has access to the hosting account? Knowing where to go when it’s time to update your certificate will save you a lot of time and hassle down the road.
3. Check For Updates Regularly
Finally, check on your certificate regularly—at least once a month—to ensure that everything is running smoothly and all necessary updates are up to date. This will help keep your website running smoothly and protect against any potential security issues or lapses in service.
4. Get a maintenance plan
The best way to avoid any issues with your website maintenance and security is to get a maintenance plan. For a small monthly fee, your website will be updated, backed up and monitored 24/7. The maintenance plan is a must for those businesses that heavily rely on their website such as e-commerce stores and lead-generation websites. But it’s also highly recommended for all other websites to make sure your website is running smoothly and effectively. You can check our maintenance packages here.
Having an up-to-date SSL certificate is essential part of any conversion-focused website. With just a few minutes of effort updating the certification every year or so, you can rest assured knowing that both yourself and customers remain protected against potential cyber threats while also improving search engine visibility!
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