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Google Chrome SSL certificate changes. Are you ready?

Imagine you are searching for a product online and you click on a website to see a warning page telling you that this website is not secure. Would you still click through to the website or would you choose to get your product from a different site?

Imagine if the same thing started to happen with your own website. How many customers will you lose? How fast will your online sales decline?

Such an unfortunate scenario became more probable today with Google’s recent changes regarding SSL. Starting from July 2018, you need to make sure that your website has an SSL certificate or it WILL be penalised by Google. These changes will coincide with the release of Chrome 68 and will look like this in a users’ Chrome browser:

According to NetMarketShare trackers, Chrome browser held more than 60 per cent of the global browser market share during the past 12 months compared to only 15 per cent for Safari and 6 per cent for Firefox. This means that Google’s “Not Secure” shame label is likely to be noticed by a larger volume of your customers and will have a negative impact on your sales.


What is an SSL Certificate?

An SSL certificate is a common method used to ensure a secure connection between a websites and users’ browsers and vice versa by using a cryptographic system that uses two keys to encrypt data. SSL is usually used to secure a users’ login details, such as their passwords, payment details and transactions, that’s why it’s most commonly used on e-commerce sites.

What is changing?

In 2014, Google appealed to all website owners to secure their websites with an SSL Certificate to create a safer internet for everyone.

In October 2017, Google started to gradually implement its new SSL strategy by sending security warnings to users when they attempted to access websites with no SSL certificates, causing a noticeable decline in their traffic and ranking.

Starting from July 2018, Google will mark all websites with no SSL Certificate as “Not Secure” according to an announcement they’ve published in February this year. These changes will not only decrease users trust in http websites but also reduce their ranking on google search results.

In a recent announcement, Google has also asked website owners who use SSL certificates issued by Symantec certificate authority before June 1, 2016 or after December 1, 2017 to replace these certificates by March 15, 2018 as they are no longer trusted by Google. The warning includes Symantec-owned brands like Thawte, VeriSign, Equifax, GeoTrust, and RapidSSL. Users accessing websites using these certificates will be warned that their connection is not private and will be given an option to continue to the website. However, the majority of users will most likely leave the site.

In October 2018, all certificates issued by Symantec certificate authority will stop working regardless of their issue date.

What does that mean to you?

If your website is currently running without an SSL certificate, you need to contact your web developer as soon as possible to add it to your website or you’ll keep losing your customers and your website rank on Google search results. If you already have an SSL certificate but are not sure if it’s going to be affected by the recent announcement, you should also get in touch with your website developer.

Still unsure? We can offer a fully managed service for SSL certificates, providing purchase, installation and renewal so your website, emails and customers continue to be protected from day one. We can guide you through the process with all the technical work undertaken by ourselves.

Contact our web development team to help you add a trusted SSL certificate to your website or check whether you current SSL Certificate is trusted by Google or need to be replaced: 03452001185.

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