When implementing a network or server-to-server e-commerce website, the provisioning of an SSL certificate is always a source of frustration. The reasons are many but all of them boil down to one thing – getting a valid certificate can be difficult and requires a great deal of technical know-how.
This article explains everything you need to know about installing and managing SSL certificates on your e-commerce website. Keep reading to discover how SSL certificates work and what factors impact the cost, speed and granularity of obtaining them from Certificate Authorities (CAs).
What is an SSL Certificate?
An SSL certificate is a security technology that marks the identification and communication of a website with a public network. The public network may be the Internet or a intranet. The website using the SSL certificate is known as the Certificate Authority (CA).
The public key infrastructure (PKI) used in the CA is called a digital certificate. The functions of the SSL certificate include generating a digital certificate that is valid and trusted among the participants in the public network, such as a website’s visitors, clients connecting to the website, and other servers communicating with the website.
The digital certificate is digitally signed by the CA’s private key, which is stored in the website’s code. The website’s code confirms that the user is interacting with the website using legitimate credentials.
Why is an SSL Certificate Important?
SSL certificates are important because they help secure your customers’ data. When a customer visits your website, their computer requests a web page from the server. The server responds with the web page’s data, which includes the data from the certificate that the server uses to verify that the visitor is authorized to access the website.
When a site uses an SSL certificate, no data is sent or received without being authenticated. This means that SSL certificates are required for secure websites, and without them, your customers’ data could be in danger. You can also think of SSL certificates as a guarantee that the data was not tampered with in any way when it was transmitted from the website to the user’s computer.
How to Install and Manage an SSL Certificate on a Website
The first step to installing and managing an SSL certificate on your website is choosing the right software. Start with getting familiar with the tools available on your operating system. You can refer to the documentation and search the software’s documentation to familiarize yourself with its features. Once you’ve Googled your issues and searched through the documentation, you’ll have a much better chance of success. A good place to start is by looking at the documentation for your server-side tools.
Next, you’ll need to create a certificate request. A certificate request is a request sent to a Certificate Authority (CA). The CA’s job is to issue you a valid SSL certificate after you log on with the appropriate credentials. You can create a certificate request through your web hosting control panel or by sending an email to your site’s support ticketing system.
With the certificate request, you’ll need to provide information about your website such as its URL and the type of content you’ll be providing. After you’ve created the certificate request, you’ll need to send it to the CA. It may take the CA several days to process the request and issue you a valid SSL certificate.
SSL Certificates: The Pros and Cons
One of the main issues with implementing an SSL certificate is that getting a valid certificate can be difficult and requires a great deal of technical know-how. The following Pros and Cons help break down the advantages and disadvantages of SSL certificates. Pros No technical expertise required – The most important thing you need to know about SSL certificates is how to create a certificate request. Anyone can do this by looking in the operating system’s documentation or by searching the web.
CAs issue lots of certificates – It is important to note that when you use a well-known website like GoDaddy or Microsoft, you are likely to receive a lot of certificates. This is because these companies have a lot of customers and have distributed their engineering efforts among a large number of servers. This results in lots of experience with which CAs and SSL certificates you can choose from. Takes less time to get a new certificate – It might take the CA several days to issue you a valid certificate.
In this case, you might have to wait a long time before you can use your website. On the other hand, when you use a simple website without any advanced features, it might take the server several minutes to issue a valid certificate. Get a better price – It is important to note that when you use a well-known company, you are likely to get a best price. However, this is likely to be the case only if you are willing to accept a lower level of security. Cons Greater investment required – It might cost more to buy an SSL certificate from a CA than to create your own.
This is because a CA has to store the private key used to issue you the certificate, which may incur a fee. No assurance of privacy – You are not protected by an SSL certificate the same way you are with a normal TLS certificate. For example, when a user visits your website, their IP address is being transferred along with the data. This is possible with an SSL certificate but not with a normal TLS certificate.
The article discussed everything you need to know about installing and managing SSL certificates on your e-commerce website. SSL certificates are important because they help secure your customers’ data. When a customer visits your website, their computer requests a web page from the server.
The server responds with the web page’s data, which includes the data from the certificate that the server uses to verify that the visitor is authorized to access the website. This article also helped explain why you need an SSL certificate and how to get one. SSL certificates are one of the most secure ways to protect your data.