Business Opportunity Security — Is Your Website Safe? Another techie irritation is on the horizon, and it’s one you don’t want to ignore. You could lose customers if you don’t have a web address with HTTPS, an upgraded, more secure version of the standard HTTP.
Not sure what the difference is? You’re not the only one. Here is a short course in web URL security, why it is important to you and your business opportunity security, and what you need to do to avoid the dreaded “not secure” warning message.
Business Opportunity Security — HTTPS vs. HTTP
The official name is Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, better known as HTTPS. That’s the type of URL you now want for your website. When a visitor comes to your site, they know they have a connection that is encrypted. This makes their data safer, like when they type information into a contact form or give you their credit card number.
Whenever your visitor or customer type information, their data flows from their web browser, like Chrome, to your website. If the connection isn’t encrypted, hackers can read and capture the data. That’s bad news if your customer is typing in his credit card info.
Not sure how to tell if a website is secure? You’ve probably noticed a padlock icon in the bar when you type in a web address. Browsers like Chrome and Firefox use it to tell you the address is secure, using HTTPS. It means the website is encrypted and secure, and the owner of the site has an SSL certificate.
When a visitor’s browser to your site requests a connection to your webpage, your site will send this certificate to their browser. This has the information needed to start a secure session. An entire protocol is involved, using public and private keys and an SSL handshake.
You don’t need to understand the protocol and other technical stuff, but you will need to arrange for the HTTPS designation by October.
Business Opportunity Security — But I Don’t Have a Store on My Website
Even if you don’t collect payment information, do you have a signup form to collect email addresses? How about passwords? By October, Chrome and Google will start marking conventional HTTP websites that collect this type of data as “Not Secure.” You don’t want your visitors to get that message, do you?
This is about more than keeping Google happy. Investing in a secure connection looks good to your visitors and buyers. You spend time, effort and money to get people to buy from you and trust you. Just the effort in enticing visitors to your website takes hours of work on content, graphics, and marketing. But you can lose them in a moment if they suddenly see “Not Secure” on their browser. When you upgrade to HTTPS, your business opportunity security reputation is enhanced.
It also gives you peace of mind. You don’t want to put your visitors at the risk of identity theft or fraud. That can easily happen if credit card information is stolen. Even giving hackers the chance to steal email addresses makes you look bad and will blow away potential customers.
And your customers expect it. With rising security concerns, internet users have become more educated about the importance of only giving data to sites that are secure, those with the padlock icon.
Business Opportunity Security — Why October?
Why do you need to do this by October? Google has been pushing website owners for the last year or more to upgrade to HTTPS. Soon it will release Chrome v62. Standard with this version is the requirement for a secure connection.
It isn’t sudden. With v56 of Chrome, released early in 2017, Google started the process of marking any non-secure website that asked for passwords and collected credit card information.
Business Opportunity Security — How Do I Get Secure?
You can ask your tech team to handle it. For website developers, the team at Chrome has two free, helpful guides about enabling HTTPS and avoiding the Not Secure warning.
If you do your own website work, buy and install an SSL certificate. The basic certificate is affordable, around $15 annually, which is about the cost of a domain. Your web hosting company should have a tutorial that will guide you through the installation. It’s not hard.
If your website is even slightly complex, using systems like Akamai or Varnish, experts recommend that you let a developer handle the installation. With each layer of complexity on your site, the installation process gets a bit trickier.
Business Opportunity Security — Will Installing HTTPS Screw Up My Site?
Probably not. Almost all types of standard website tools, from social media buttons to mapping and commenting setups, already support HTTPS. But that said, it’s always a good idea, whenever you upgrade, to find out how it will affect the rest of your site.
If you’re worried, hire a developer to handle the job. It’s worth the low investment. That’s because if compatibility issues do crop up, your visitors will get a security warning about “mixed content.” It’s enough to scare most people off.
Business Opportunity Security — It Sounds Like a Lot of Hassle
Actually, more like a small- to medium-amount of hassle. Long-term, this change is good for you and your business. When people see that you have a secure site, you gain credibility. People will trust your online business opportunity security. Visitors are more likely to stay and look around. Customers are more likely to buy from you.
And it will possibly help your ranking in the search engines. Google has made HTTPS one of the factors that impact how you rank. Google is in the business of helping people find what they are looking for online. When a site is secure, people are more likely to use it, a win for both Google and you.
Business Opportunity Security — In a Nutshell, Why Should I Upgrade to HTTPS?
Here are 4 reasons to switch to HTTPS:
- Credit card numbers, passwords and other types of customer info are encrypted. That means hackers can’t intercept the data as it passes from the customer browser to your website.
- It tells visitors to your site that you are legitimate. They can verify that you are a real business and that you actually own the domain.
- You gain instant credibility. Your visitors are more likely to trust you enough to give you payment information, making it easier to convert visitors to customers.
- If you don’t, visitors to your site will get a warning message, “Not Secure.” When that happens, most will simply leave.