What Are SSL Certificates Used For?
In the current era of the Internet, cybersecurity has become more important than ever before. Among various security measures, SSL certificates serve as a key technology to enhance website security, playing a critical role in protecting the safety of data transmission. This article will provide a comprehensive explanation of what features SSL certificates have, their functions, and how to apply for and install an SSL certificate, helping readers gain a deeper understanding of this important cybersecurity technology.
What Is an SSL Certificate?
An SSL certificate (Secure Socket Layer Certificate) is a digital certificate that primarily aims to secure data transmitted over the Internet. Installed on a server, it ensures the safety and integrity of data transferred between a client’s web browser and the web server by adhering to the SSL protocol. It has two core functionalities: server authentication and data transmission encryption.
Types of SSL Certificates
SSL certificates can be categorized into the following types based on the level of validation and the number of domain names they protect:
- DV SSL Certificate (Domain Validation): Only verifies the ownership of the domain name and is the fastest type of certificate to obtain.
- OV SSL Certificate (Organization Validation): In addition to domain ownership, it verifies the actual existence of the organization, providing a moderate level of trust.
- EV SSL Certificate (Extended Validation): Offers the highest level of validation including a rigorous identity verification process, displaying a green address bar to users.
- Single-domain SSL Certificate: Protects only one domain or sub-domain.
- Wildcard SSL Certificate: Can protect an unlimited number of sub-domains.
- Multi-domain SSL Certificate: Can protect several different domain names.
Features and Functions of SSL Certificates
The features and functions of SSL certificates include:
- Encrypting sensitive information: SSL certificates help encrypt transmitted sensitive data, such as login credentials, personal information, and payment details, to prevent data from being stolen or tampered with.
- Authenticating true identity: By performing identity verification, SSL certificates ensure that a website is authentic and not a fake phishing site.
- Eliminating browser warnings: Once an SSL certificate is deployed, the browser displays a security lock icon when visiting the site, and the “not secure” warnings are no longer presented.
- Boosting user trust: The HTTPS protocol and security lock icon increase user trust in the site, which is more likely to facilitate business transactions.
- Improving SEO ranking: Search engines like Google tend to rank websites with SSL certificates higher, which helps in improving SEO rankings.
- Meeting compliance requirements: SSL certificates comply with cybersecurity laws and other legal regulations, ensuring data encryption and preventing data leaks or theft.