Are you planning to migrate your website from HTTP to HTTPS? Do you want install a SSL certificate on your WordPress site? Then this is the right article for you to know how to add SSL and HTTPS in a WordPress website. If you have no idea what SSL or HTTPS is we’re going to explain that as well.
What is HTTPS and SSL?
In our day to day life we use internet for almost all things and share our personal information with different websites like making a purchase or by logging in or in social networking websites. While doing any transaction data protection is very important. In order to protect the data a secure or encrypted connection is required. Here SSL (Secure Socket Layer) and HTTPS comes in to the picture.
Hyper Text transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is an encryption method that secures the connection between users’ browser and server. This connection ensures that all data transferred between the web server and browsers remain private and confidential in order to prevent eavesdropping and tampering. This also helps avoiding hacker’s attacks and other vulnerabilities in the connection.
For identification purpose, each site is provided with a unique SSL certificate and if a server is pretending to be on HTTPS, and it’s certificate doesn’t match, then most browsers will give a warning to the user before they connect with that website.
HTTP Vs HTTPS
Many criteria differentiate between HTTP and HTTPS. Below are the three major differences between HTTP and HTTPS.
Based on Network layers: HTTP runs on TCP/IP model which is the Application layer. SSL is a security protocol runs on lower sub-layer of the same TCP/IP model but it encrypts an HTTP message before transmission and decrypts once it arrives in the destination.
Based on URL: HTTPS URLs begin with https://and use port 443 by default, whereas HTTP URLs begin with http:// and use port 80 by default.
Based on Security: HTTP is insecure and is vulnerable to attacks, which can allow attackers/hacker’s to gain access to sensitive data in the website. Whereas HTTPS is designed to withstand and very secure against these attacks.
Now you might be thinking why we need to move a HTTP site to HTTPS site and perform a process of installing a SSL certificate?
Why HTTPS and SSL required?
If you are accessing internet over unencrypted/unsecured networks (such as open hotspot Wi-Fi in railway stations, clubs, airports) then HTTPS works as a shield to protect data. If anyone who is connected to same network can do packet sniffing and collect critical information. If you connect to a website content securely via HTTPS, then nobody can track or see what you are accessing. If you’re doing business online, then SSL certificate is mandatory especially if you are collecting payment information.
Payment gateway providers like PayPal and others will require you to have a secure connection using SSL. Many customers avoid doing business with a HTTP website which is not secured. If you have a SSL Site Seal this helps the customers to shop or use a website with confidence, as they know they are protected. This is the best way to protect sensitive information and avoid against identity theft.
Prerequisites for adding HTTPS/SSL on a WordPress Site
For making your website start with HTTPS all you need to do is purchase a SSL certificate. There are some WordPress hosting providers which offer free SSL with their plans. In case if your provider does not offer any free SSL certificate, then you can get a third party issued SSL Certificate for your website. Most hosting providers issue SSL certificates with a minimum charge which varies with different providers. GoDaddy is also provides this service. Once you get a SSL Certificate for your website, then you need to install it on your server. This is a fairly straight forward process.
Also Read : How to secure WordPress website?