HTTPS

Google’ s Latest Initiative to Boost Search Rankings for HTTPS Sites

August 12, 2014 | By Editor 

Summary

Currently, websites using secure communication protocol HTTPS gain only minimal advantage in Google Internet searches but the enterprise says that is changing. For the past few months, the tech titan has been testing web pages that have default HTTPS encryption, and will launch across its algorithms.

According to Google, its research on web pages has yielded positive results and has allowed the company to start using HTTPS as a ranking sign. This decision aims to encourage more websites to turn on encryption making them less susceptible to hacking. Encryption digitally scrambles information bits as it passes between a user’s system and an online service to prevent hackers from  prying on the transiting data. Most websites, though not all, display a little closed padlock and use a HTTPS-beginning web address where  “S” in the protocol stands for ‘secure’.But for majority of the companies across the Internet, adding encryption at this point has proved  an extra  burden in terms of money and time.

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In the Best Interest of Companies

According to security experts, initially companies have been reluctant from encryption due to either money concerns or fears of slowing site response times. But with today’s high-speed encryption methods, the cost and speed factor no longer pose an issue. Also, there exists no excuse for any information to be sent or stored in plain text.  Every organization desires to have a favorable ranking on Google, so it is on them to ensure that web pages are encrypted.

Google has stated that for the moment whether a website is encrypted or not, it would not play an  important factor in how they ranked websites. With only fewer global queries affected at present, Google is giving web masters ample time to switch to from HTTP to HTTPS.

In 2011, Google’s Gmail services was introduced HTTPS by default. In March 2014, Yahoo moved all its users’ details to secure servers, and since July 2013, popular social media site Facebook committed to secure Web browsing by default.

The move of larger organizations to encourage encryption is a direct result of leaks from Edward Snowden. The former system admin had alleged that the National Security Agency (NSA) was using technologies to spy on citizens prompting a global debate on  cyber security and privacy.

For years, Google has been advocating the use of encryption on its sites, when it enabled HTTPS by default on Google Drive, search, and Gmail.  However,  Snowden shocking revelations from the past year massively  increased the company’s  focus on Internet security.

Google’s Influence Across the Globe

This is another good example of the global influence of Google’s ranking system.
While the American corporate does not control Web content, its search service is till date the most effective way for finding any content on the Web. Therefore, any step taken by webmasters  to increase their Google ranking will equate to more visitors and subsequent increase in revenue.

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