HTTP vs. HTTPS: Is It Time For Your Website To Make the Switch?


You’ve probably heard about the distinction between HTTP vs. HTTPS, with HTTP meaning “HyperText Transport Protocol” and HTTPS simply adding “Secure” to the end of it. Is there really a big difference between the two? Is it an important enough difference to warrant switching over your website to HTTPS? The short answer to both of these questions is yes, and here are a few reasons why you should consider making the switch for your website.

What are HTTP and HTTPS?
HTTP is a type of language that is used to handle information that is exchanged between a web server and a client (generally someone on a computer with an Internet browser). Whenver you view a website and send information through that site, such as credit card information or a password, HTTP handles the work in those exchanges.

HTTPS is an upgraded form of HTTP that uses SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) protocols to encrypt the information that is exchanged between a web server and a client. This makes it much more difficult for digital eavesdroppers to intercept sensitive information and hijack accounts.

Why Does It Matter?
There was a time when HTTP – with a certain amount of safeguards – was sufficient for preventing various acts of cyber-crime. However, current technology that allows for digital break-ins has become so advanced that even low skilled cyber criminals can break in and access unprotected information relatively easily, which allows them to even take control of user accounts.

Eavesdropping has the potential to devastate your clients or users, and there is a good chance that savvy users won’t bother with an unprotected connection and decide to make the switch to a competitor’s service instead. For this reason, HTTPS is a must for your website.

Real Risks
Given the advancement in web-based technology, there are now free tools that allow even low skilled hackers to intercept unencrypted information. This allows cyber criminals to steal credit card numbers, pin numbers, social security numbers, passwords, and other crucial information with ease.

Another insidious practice involves a cyber criminal using a decoy version of a legitimate site (typically called DNS poisoning) to intercept your connection and redirect you to the dummy site without your knowledge. After that, you are just shoveling information right into the attacker’s hands. However if you are using a SSL protocol, a warning should appear that the site does not have the necessary certificate. Of course there are still risks for users on HTTPS websites, but with the right safeguards those risks are much lower than if users are operating on simple HTTP.

Fortunately, HTTPS has become more widespread in usage. Most web service firms like Los Angeles SEO company, Coalition Technologies, use HTTPS as standard practice when building websites for their clients, and regularly recommend that HTTP sites make the switch as soon as possible. It appears that HTTPS is the new industry standard, and we’re all better for it.

Author Bio: Rohit Bhargava works as a SEO specialist at Romy LMS and has dedicated 5 years of innovative work to the SEO and Online Marketing field, developing inventive link building, social media, and search engine optimization techniques. Rohit enjoys sharing his expertise with the marketing community through his writings, and when he’s off his computer he is reading and spending time with friends and family. Network with Rohit on Google+ and Facebook.

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