The digital landscape is forever evolving and changing as we become more reliant on technology for business and personal use. As hackers and scammers are ramping up their strategies to breach security measures, stronger and more creative defences have been put into place to keep our information safe in the digital world. You may have noticed the transition from HTTP to HTTPS for many websites and web servers
, for this very reason. Here’s what HTTPS really means , and why it’s so important.
What is HTTPS?
HTTPS stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure. The missing ingredient from the former HTTP standard is the key as to why it is so important for site owners and visitors: SECURE. When you visit an online website, you are essentially engaging in a data transfer with your device and the site that you are visiting. The difference from the former standard HTTP, is that HTTPS will encrypt the information that is exchanged. This encryption is essentially a one-time-use-only access key unique to your device, delivered through an SSL certificate. This allows the information to be transferred
, but prevents any third party members from accessing this information. Each returning session on that website will be encrypted in a new way.
Why HTTPS is Important?
HTTPS is the standard for reputable web browsers like Firefox and Google Chrome, and for a good reason. It protects both the site owner or business and the visitor’s valuable information
, should an exterior threat attempt to access the information being exchanged. For this reason, HTTPS is particularly important for sites that require login credentials and passwords. By comparison, using HTTP would be the equivalent of shouting your personal information out loud in a crowded, busy space. Not everyone would hear the words you’re saying, but you are exposing this information to those who might be intentionally spying for valuable information. That information isn’t safe and it isn’t secured. On the other hand, HTTPS would be equivalent to shouting nonsensical words, letters and numbers in a crowded space. Even if someone was listening to you, the information that is available to them is completely useless. This means that the information exchanged is secure.
Why HTTPS is Important for Site Owners
As a business or a website owner, not only is it vital to have your site and server secure to protect your own assets, but it establishes your site as a secured, reliable source for your visitors and consumers. Security breaches of any kind can damage the trust of your visitors, who want to feel confident that their own information is secure and the site that they are exchanging data with is legitimate. One example of the more prominent issues with HTTP is sensitive data exposure. Sensitive data exposure occurs when an application, company, or other entity inadvertently exposes personal data. Sensitive data exposure differs from a data breach, in which an attacker accesses and steals information.
Why HTTPS is Important for Visitors
When navigating websites, it’s important to check that the site is operating with HTTPS, particularly if it requires log in credentials, or e-commerce. It only takes
a simple software for scammers and hackers to spy on the information exchanged on an unsecured site. As we all know, an unsecured password could lead to identity theft. It’s even more important for e-commerce sites, as vital information is exchanged like your address, postal code, and credit card information. This information, of course, should be kept secured. As a visitor, you wouldn’t want your credit card numbers broadcast to everyone, so having this encryption process with HTTPS is of paramount importance. It’s important to do your due diligence to check your settings and the site that you are visiting and don’t give your valuable information to a site that isn’t secure. A great tip to know if you are operating with HTTPS is to look for this lock symbol in the URL section seen below: