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http and https

It’s Time to Secure Your Site

Google is making some changes again, and this time it’s serious. If your site is not currently using HTTPS and SSL encryption, it’s time to update and secure your site.

What in the SSL is going on?

Starting in January 2017, Google’s widely-used Chrome web browser started flagging websites that don’t use web encryption as being “Not Secure”. This is usually noted by a warning in the address bar.

As a web user, you’ve probably seen this “in the wild.” Chrome isn’t the only browser to flag unsecured sites, but seeing as it is run by Google itself, it’s generally the big one to watch for these kinds of updates.

This change will affect all websites not using encryption.

Eventually, Chrome will display an even more urgent-looking red warning in the address bar for all unsecured sites and pages. Right now, red warnings are only shown for sites with broken encryption.

Unlike many types of website updates, this one isn’t a question about if you should do it, but when — and the October 2017 deadline is right around the corner. To avoid running into issues with your Google page ranks, traffic levels, or losing your visitors’ trust, it’s time to secure your site.

Why is this happening?

Basically, Google wants everything over the web to be travelling over a secure channel. There are a few reasons for this:

  • Authentication
  • Data Integrity
  • Encryption

Authentication is about verifying ownership of your site. Are you who you say you are, or are you an imposter? Replicating websites to steal traffic and data is a popular tactic of scammers.
Similarly, Data Integrity deals with making sure the data on your site was not tampered with during transmission.
Encryption ensures the security of data communications between the user and the website server. When data is encrypted, no one else can read it.

For websites using regular old unsecured HTTP, anyone with the ability to snoop on the connection could potentially hijack data, steal passwords, read private messages, or otherwise access information that may be sensitive. To protect your business and your site users, you need to update your website from HTTP to HTTPS as soon as possible.

example of unsecure site in address bar; lock with a red line through it

What is HTTPS?

HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) is the secure alterative to regular, unsecure HTTP. HTTPS not only ensures that hackers, scammers, thieves, and spies can’t easily intercept data, it also ensures that the site you’re looking at really is the site you want, and not an imposter trying to trick you or steal your information. When a site uses HTTPS, the browser doesn’t display a warning or nothing at all – it validates the site’s security with a friendly green padlock.

This change will affect all websites not using encryption.

Eventually, Chrome will display an even more urgent-looking red warning in the address bar for all unsecured sites and pages. Right now, red warnings are only shown for sites with broken encryption.

How to update your site from HTTP to HTTPS?

Updating your website from HTTP to HTTPS requires obtaining an installing an SSL Digital Certificate on the server, along with many other steps to your site and configuration. Due to some potential issues that can arise, updating your website from HTTP to HTTPS is not a DIY project – you need to work with a trusted provider, and there will be a fee. Luckily, Blayzer is ready to help make the transition as easy and affordable as possible with little to no disruption of your site. Here are some of the tasks we can do for you to secure your site:

  • Obtain & install the right SSL digital certificate for your website
  • Update your site’s configuration & redirect traffic from your old HTTP site to your new HTTPS site
  • Update Google Search Console to verify your site ownership and change the sitemap location
  • Update Google Analytics
  • Update related marketing tools & campaigns (current marketing clients/campaigns only) OR consult on changes that need to be made to keep your non-Blayzer marketing efforts working correctly
  • Testing & troubleshooting

We want to keep our clients’ data and sites safe and do our part to help in the push for a more secure internet. From here on out, every new website Blayzer builds will include HTTPS and SSL. For existing sites, we are working with our past, present, and future clients to bring everyone up to date. This is especially important for WordPress sites, since WordPress is also joining Google’s push for security and many of the popular platform’s features will soon begin requiring the use of HTTPS.

If you’re not already working on it, contact us as soon as possible to get started on updating your site from HTTP to HTTPS and keep your site warning-free.

CONTACT FOR SECURITY

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