Help boost customer confidence online
INFRASYN now offers a full range of SSL Certificates from the four leading SSL brands in the world - TrustWave, GeoTrust, Thawte and VeriSign.
We offer a complete line of SSL products from inexpensive domain validate certificates that can be issued in minutes, to Extended Validation SSL Certificates that offer complete identity validation of the organization purchasing the certificate.
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SSL Certificates Overview
What is SSL?
SSL is an acronym for "Secure Sockets Layer" and is a method for establishing a secure, encrypted link between two different systems such as a web browser and a web server.
What do SSL Certificates provide?
SSL Certificates provide two important roles for systems that use them:
- SSL certificates provide security by encrypting the data between the browser and the web server.
Data encryption is critical for financial transactions or other situations where websites are requesting sensitive data from visitors. Many web users will not have confidence that their interactions with the website is secure and encrypted, unless they see the lock icon which provides a visual cue that an SSL certificate has been used to protect data.
- SSL certificates provide identity verification, through domain and organization validation. Only the verified owner of a domain name may purchase an SSL certificate for that domain. For Organization validated SSL certificates, only verified, approved representatives of the organization are permitted to purchase an SSL certificate for domains in use by the organization.
Extended Validation (EV) certificates take identity validation even further. Sites with an EV SSL certificate will cause the address bar on the web browser to turn green. Users are able to view information about the website that will help them to confirm that they are dealing with who they believe they are dealing with.
Both applications of SSL Certificates are important for building a trust relationship with end-users that is required before they will pass along personal, or financial information to websites or online service providers.
How does SSL work?
In the case of web browsers surfing secure web sites, SSL communication starts with the web browser requesting the digital certificate from the web server. The certificate contains the hostname of the web server, an expiration date of the certificate, the public key of the web server, and is signed by a Certificate Authority. The web browser can validate all of these pieces of information except for the public key of the web server. If all of the verifiable components pass validation, the web browser will generate its own public key and send it back to the web server. When the web browser's public key is sent back to the web server as a response, it uses the web server's public key, which was contained within the certificate, to encrypt the browser's public key being sent. Now both the web server and web browser will be able to communicate with each using secure, encrypted communications because they have exchanged each of their public keys.
What is a Wildcard certificate?
A wildcard SSL Certificate helps enable SSL encryption on multiple sub-domains using a single certificate as long as the domains are controlled by the same organization and share the same second-level domain name. For example, a Wildcard certificate issued to Company ABC using the Common Name ("*.CompanyABC.com") may be used to secure subdomains like login.companyabc.com, payment.companyabc.com and support.companyabc.com.
What are Site Seals?
Site Seals are static or dynamic images that can be placed on SSL secured websites that allows visitors to tell at a glance that they can trust who they are dealing with, that the online site is validated and that they can transact safely and securely. Each of the three brands of SSL Certificates offer different site seals:
- VeriSign Secured Seal is available with all VeriSign-branded SSL certificates for installation on pages secured with a VeriSign SSL Certificate. Customers not only see the trust mark, they can click the seal and verify the site in real time. More than any other trust mark, 79% of U.S. online shoppers are familiar with the VeriSign Secured Seal.
- GeoTrust True Site Seal is available with every GeoTrust SSL Certificate and shows web site visitors that their information is protected. The GeoTrust True Site Seal can be added to home pages, buy pages, log-ins or any other page on your authenticated site where visitors need to verify a web site. Depending on the certificate, True Site Seals are either dynamic or static and may contain further information about the identity of the certificate owner.
- thawte Trusted Site Seal is a dynamic image appearing on websites secured with thawte SSL certificates allowing visitors to tell at a glance that they can trust the site, that the online site is validated and that they can transact safely and securely.
How does an SSL Certificate create trust in visitors to websites?
Security is a concern for many people who use the Internet. People on the Internet also recognize that websites that use digital certificates are ones that are more secure and trustworthy. Digital certificates give users confidence that their data is protected and they have a reduced risk of their information being divulged beyond the organization they are dealing with.
In addition to having a digital certificate, the Certificate Authorities that INFRASYN uses all offer Trust Seals which allow an image seal to be placed on the website itself. The banner links through to a trusted external organization that further validates the trustworthiness of the website.
What are Dynamic vs. Static Site Seals?
A Dynamic Seal is dynamic image displayed on a website that shows the current time and date of when the web page was loaded which indicates that the seal is valid for the domain it is installed on and is current and not expired. When the image is clicked, it will display information from the Certificate Authority about the website's profile which validates the web site's legitimacy. This will give visitors of the website increased confidence in the site's security.
A Static Seal is simply an static graphic image that can be placed on the website to indicate where the digital certificate was obtained from, however there is no click-through validation of the website and the image does not show the current time and date.
What is a Root Certificate Authority?
A Root Certificate Authority is the highest level of digital certificate within the trust relationship of certificates. Web browsers, and other applications which use digital certificates, have a limited set of Root Certificates from organizations that have been recognized as Root Certificate Authorities. All certificates they create will include a link back to their Root Certificate so web browsers will understand that the certificate is valid and can be trusted.
Most applications that use digital certificates, such s web browsers, will have a list of the official Certificate Authorities so they are aware they are legitimate and trusted. Certificate Authorities who are not in this list will cause the application to display warnings that the Certificate Authority is unknown, and may also suggest there are security issues associated with unknown Certificate Authorities.
What is a public/private key pair?
Public and Private keys are a pair of unique codes used to encrypt data sent another computer. When a computer wishes to speak securely with another computer, it sends its Public Key to the other computer. This Public Key can be used by the second computer to encrypt information sent back to the first computer.