HTTPS

Why Adopting HTTPS is Important

November 14, 2014 | By Editor 

Summary

  • In the wake of a growing number of data breaches,cyber security and privacy concerns, replacing the standard HTTP with its secure alternative, HTTPS, is becoming more important.
  • Although HTTPS was deployed 20 years ago, many sites have traditionally used the insecure HTTP channel to serve traffic.
  • During the early days of the Internet, server and network performance served as the limiting factors as to whether a website used HTTPS.
  • The server was required to have sufficient power to handle data encryption and SSL decryption, while the network had to have the ability to handle the extra activity.

Majority of these performance concerns are outdated. Since the cost of adoption is now low, it if high time businesses start looking into using HTTPS everywhere.

Adpting Https

Advantages of a HTTPS Connection

Data Privacy

  • When a website uses the insecure HTTP, its users’ search and browsing history are privy for anyone to see.
  • When a website used the secure HTTPS, proxies and the backbone infrastructure of the Web cannot be easily accessed and coaxed it based on content.
  • Hackers can potentially infiltrate the Transport Security Layer (TLS), or steal SSL/TLS certificates but implementing HTTPS raises the wall of privacy protection largely.

Information Security

  • When a website uses HTTP, the session cookies of its users can be intercepted and replicated into active session of a user by cyber criminals.
  • Using HTTPS will disable most man-in-the-middle (MiTM) vectors, decreasing the vulnerability profile.

Guarantees the Authenticity of News

  • When you read a news on a site using HTTP, the articles contents could have been easily modified by third parties using MiTM vectors.
  • Reading news on a site using HTTPS assures you that the articles read are not intercepted by unwanted entities.

Provides Improved Analytics

  • The referrers of a site drop significantly, when a user visits a HTTP page from a HTTPS webpage.

Improves Site Rankings in Google

  • Google recently announced it will treat HTTPS as a ranking factor in search results.

Provides Users with Better Internet Experience

  • HTTPS facilitates login, site registration, and other e-commerce integrations anywhere on the website, without having the need to go a separate HTTPS website.

Integrating Third Parties and Emerging Technologies

  • New technologies are designed to work in tandem with HTTPS websites.
  • Although they are yet to be made mainstream, embracing HTTPS has now eased future adoption.
  • Many third parties now require HTTPS to make use of some of their services.

Other Enhancements

  • The successful replacement of HTTPS over HTTP for an entire site is likely to expose a significant amount of existing tech issues.

The Challenges in Adopting HTTPS

  • In order to successfully move from HTTP to HTTPS, all the requests to Web pages need to be made via a secure channel. It is a tedious task, an uphill challenge that involves many moving parts.
  • Businesses have to consider all the resources currently being loaded from insecure domains such as advertisement assets and JavaScript, among others.
  • In case the assets for ad ad are not able to serve over a HTTPS channel, the ad will probably not display on the Web page. This could directly impact the revenue. In addition, it can be a bit difficult to determine if each ad will load over HTTPS.

Considering the significance of ads, this will likely pose a huge hurdle to many media companies’ HTTPS implementation. Some advertising platforms such as Google’s DoubleClick for Publishers (DEP) support HTTPS loading, there are still many ad networks that are not HTTPS-compatible.

Apart from advertising, firms may likely face other obstacles while implementing HTTPS. Businesses can consider modern solutions such as HTTP Strict Transport Security for a better implementation.

HTTPS

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