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What is an SSL Certificate?

2018-06-09 ONE NET WIKI

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An SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate is a digital certificate that authenticates the identity of a website and encrypts information sent to the server using SSL technology.

When installed on a web server, it activates the padlock and the https protocol and allows secure connections from a web server to a browser.

A certificate serves as an electronic "passport" that establishes an online entity's credentials when doing business on the Web. When an Internet user attempts to send confidential information to a Web server, the user's browser accesses the server's digital certificate and establishes a secure connection.

An SSL certificate contains the following information:

  • The certificate holder's name

  • The certificate's serial number and expiration date

  • A copy of the certificate holder's public key

  • The digital signature of the certificate-issuing authority

When a certificate is successfully installed on your server, the application protocol (also known as HTTP) will change to HTTPs, where the ‘S’ stands for ‘secure’. Depending on the type of certificate you purchase and what browser you are surfing the internet on, a browser will show a padlock or green bar in the browser when you visit a website that has an SSL Certificate installed.

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