- December 22, 2016
- Posted by: Planet 8 Digital
- Category: Security
Why you should know the difference between HTTP and HTTPS
First off, the differences between the two are pretty substantial, even if the abbreviations are only different by one letter. The idea between both is that data is retrieved from one end and the other end is supplying it. The basics of entering a website would be this, however, simply opening and being on a site could put you at risk for unknown third parties to see what you’re seeing, or worse.
HTTPS was designed to prevent those third-party hackers from accessing and using personal information. If you enter a site and purchase something, and must supply your information but there is no ‘S’ at the top of your page after the initial ‘HTTP’ you could be providing your information to an insecure network. Which means if the third party gets access to your information you could be in a lot of trouble.
Personal security has become such an important piece of the digital world that Google chrome is taking a stance starting in January 2017. The browser will automatically view a page as unprotected and insecure if the SSL is missing from a site that requires personal information. What does any of that mean and why should you be worried about it? The team at Planet 8 Digital has the answers!
HTTP: Hypertext Transfer Protocol
When you go straight to a site by typing “www…” once you enter the site you should notice the plain “www” turns into “http://” Meaning that you’ve gained access to the page and that the transfer of information between sender and receiver worked out. It’s all about obtaining the information and maintaining the connection. Access to the front pages of a website is what HTTP does, or showing the pages that don’t require any personal information.
The access and transfer information happen within a designated code. The code, however, is not encrypted so if a third party views the code they can read it. Fortunately, there’s not usually anything to gain from this; unless they’re excellent and can trace everything back to your computer which may have your information on it, but that’s why there’s computer security!
HTTPS or Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure
We mentioned briefly before the presence of an SSL or Secure Socket Layer, and its reliability regarding security. SSL certified means that the issuer is a secured third party that ensures the safety of personal information. Much like HTTP these pages rely on code, unlike HTTP the code this time is encrypted so even if an insecure third party could access the system they won’t be able to decipher it. HTTPS also means that there is limited access to the page that you’re on, it requires something that not everyone may have. Passwords for example or credit card information to finish purchasing your online order. Those are specific pages that only you have access to from that connection on your end.
The code that is sent from your computer to the receiving end for access gets sent back scrambled. If you’re asked to supply information and that ‘S’ doesn’t come after the ‘HTTP’ then you’re not using an SSL certified site and the information you provide could get into the wrong hands.
How does this affect you?
Good news, Google believes that our personal security is the forefront of 2017. Bad news, getting that SSL certification may be a little tricky on your own, but that’s why you have Planet 8 Digital!
We would encourage everyone to look into the SSL certificate. Not just because Google is cracking down, but because if you ask for personal information, it would not only protect your customers but yourself as well.