The internet is no longer secure. Hackers are laying their traps to try and pull off some of the most devastating data breaches. Users have now become cleverer. No one is willing to browse an insecure website. Google’s Transparency Report shows that the HTTPS protocol served 89% of all pages loaded on Google chrome in January 2021.
To those still asking the “HTTP or HTTPS?” question, I will tell you that the answer is HTTPS. This article explains to you the key differences between the two and why HTTPS is the answer.
- What is HTTP
The Hypertext Transfer Protocol alias HTTP is an application protocol that enables users to transmit data across the World Wide Web, adversely affecting hypermedia information systems.
The first interactive text-based web browser was created in conjunction with HTML: original World Wide Web. The protocol is still one of the keyways of transmitting resources via the internet. HTTP enables us to communicate with internet tools such as HTML files via hypertext transfers from clients to servers. In general, HTTP clients use TCP connections to interact with internet servers.
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- What is HTTPS?
The secure version of HTTP, the principal protocol used to transport data between web browsers and servers, is the Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS). To enhance data transfer safety, all data transferred via HTTPS is encrypted. The HTTPS protocol is especially crucial when users send sensitive data such as their login credentials, debit card info, e-mail information, or health insurance records over the internet.
To prevent the many data breaches happening today, all webmasters should fully embrace the HTTPS protocol.
- Difference Between HTTP and HTTPS?
So, which one should you choose? HTTP or HTTPS? The difference lies in one single letter, S. However, the S factor has a significant impact on the security of your website. To the extent, the lack of it could render your website vulnerable to data security breaches that would leave your organization crumbling on its deathbed.
Like I mentioned above, HTTP is just a mere transfer protocol. Imagine a situation where a money van transports money without any security. There would be several burglars trying to hit the van before it reaches its desired destination. The chances are that it might never reach its destination.
The money van scenario is so much relative to the HTTP protocol. Information is transferred between the internet in plain texts, without any form of security. Such information (which might include highly classified sensitive data) is susceptible to prying eyes and eavesdroppers.
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Intruders will have an easy time gaining access to the information being transmitted over the HTTP protocol. The reason being that it is insecure. To address the HTTP security problem, HTTPS comes in.
The Secure Socket Layer, popularly known by its SSL certificate, gives HTTPS protocols a sense of security. SSL certificates convert plain texts into indecipherable gibberish. This is called encryption. To decrypt the communication, one will require a decryption key.
It is high time you made the HTTP to HTTPS migration. It does not take much but a cheap positive SSL certificate and secure your website. The cybersecurity landscape has no time for procrastinators. The more you use the HTTP protocol, the more susceptible you become. So acquire your SSL certificate today and protect your website from hackers.
- Why do we need to switch to HTTPS?
There are various benefits that one will accrue when using HTTPS. One of the primary benefits of HTTPS is that it increases security and confidence. It protects your website against man-in-the-middle attacks conducted on unsecured networks. Hackers can use such tactics to steal your customer’s pertinent data.
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Installing an SSL certificate encrypts any data transferred between host and client throughout a user’s experience with your site. This is a vital component in the domains of data security and notably the new GDPR regarding securing personal data.
Also, the HTTPS and the padlock displays on a protected site may offer consumers a sense that your website is trustworthy, and their data is secure, leading to higher conversions and increased brand loyalty.
Additionally, there are SEO advantages that come when you migrate from HTTP to HTTPS. For example, Google ranks HTTPS pages higher than HTTP pages in the Search Engine results pages. Do you want to reign the SERPs? How about starting your SEO strategy by buying an SSL certificate?
- How does HTTPS help authenticate web servers?
An SSL-enabled application server always demands server identification or cryptographic confirmation by a client of the host’s identification. The server provides the client a certificate to authenticate itself. The client uses the certificate to validate the person the certificate purports to represent.
HTTPS client authentication utilizes HTTP via SSL (HTTPS), wherein the browser verifies the clients using the client’s Public Key Certificate. Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) technique helps with cryptography, server authentication, integrity verification, and configurable client authentication for TCP/IP communication. You may think of a public key certificate as the online equivalent of a passport. It is issued by a trusted certificate authority (CA) and offers identity for the holder.
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- The process of switching from HTTP to HTTPS
Migrating from HTTP to HTTPS is pretty simple. All you have to do is to follow the following steps.
Step 1. Purchase an SSL certificate,
Step 2. Download your Encrypted connection on your home page hosting account,
Step 3. Ensure that any site links are updated from HTTP to HTTPS, so they are not damaged once you turn the HTTPS switch.
Step 4. Established 301 redirects from HTTP to HTTPS so that browsers are alerted that your site’s addresses have switched and so that everyone who has saved a page of the website is instantly forwarded to the HTTPS URL.
The internet is insecure, and webmasters have the prime responsibility of protecting site users from data vulnerabilities. One perfect way of securing your data from intruders is by making the HTTP to HTTPS migration. This article has explained the meaning of the two transfer protocols, their differences, and why you should always work with HTTPS.