Websites can be encrypted to make internet communication more secure. The primary purpose of encryption is to protect the privacy of website visitors. As of January 2017, half of all websites were encrypted, according to Wired Magazine.
Look for the S
The quickest way to determine whether a web page is encrypted is to look at the URL (web address). If it starts with “https://,” it’s secure – the S stands for “secure.” If there is no S, the page is not secure and it would be easier for someone to “eavesdrop” on a user’s computer’s conversation with the website. This has important implications especially when it comes to filling in a form with personal and payment information. Never enter your credit card number on an http website!
Unfortunately, it’s more complicated than simply looking for the S. You also have to look for a green padlock icon in the browser address window. This is because it’s possible to secure the site as a whole and still have insecure elements within specific pages.
If the padlock is green, everything on the page is secure. If the padlock is grey, some of the elements on the page are insecure. Some browsers also display a red strike-through line or a yellow caution triangle in addition to the grey padlock. You need to check this on every page that you load in order to know the security status.
Add Encryption Now
We are encouraging our clients to act now, before their site visitors start panicking about their site being insecure. Some of our clients have reported that users of their websites have received not secure warnings that the sites are not secure. This has negatively impacted their businesses. If this hasn’t happened to you yet, you’re lucky, but you should expect it to happen soon.
According to Google, eventually Chrome (Google’s browser) will show a “Not Secure” warning for all pages served over HTTP, regardless of whether the page contains sensitive input fields. Learn more.
Google gives an advantage to secure sites in its search rankings. If you encrypt, you may move up in search results, especially if your competitors’ sites are not encrypted.