How to Make Sure You Are Ready for Google Chrome's Upcoming Security Changes

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Starting in July 2018, Google Chrome will be making some changes that will impact many websites, including the sites you and your clients use to run your businesses.

In an effort to improve security and keep your personal information safe, Google Chrome will soon display a “Not Secure” warning on every single website that doesn’t have an SSL certificate. What does this mean for you? We’ll explain.

WHO WILL BE IMPACTED BY THESE CHANGES?

Google’s changes will impact everyone who uses the Google Chrome browser. With around 60% of web users choosing Google Chrome, it is by far the most popular internet browser. To put it into perspective, assume that 3/5 of your clients use Google Chrome. That means 3 of every 5 people searching for your business online.

WHAT’S HAPPENING?

Over the past few years, the extreme importance of data security has risen to public attention due to data loss incidents at companies like Facebook and Yahoo. When you enter information in an online form and send it through a website (credit card information, address information, etc.), you are doing it one of two ways: securely and insecurely.

When you send data insecurely, hackers can steal the data as it travels between your network and that of the website you are using. That means when people use your website for orders, if it is insecure, their information could be stolen. This is really bad for business.

A recent industry report found that 76% percent of customers will leave a business after they experience data loss.

The alternative to an insecure connection is a secure connection. The industry standard in creating a secure connection is by utilizing SSL and receiving an SSL certificate.

WHAT IS SSL?

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is a technology that allows for an encrypted link between a web server and the end browser. In short, it keeps data safe.

With SSL, when you visit a website, your browser will form a connection with the server that hosts the website you are visiting. At that point, the two form a secure connection that is encrypted so that it is impervious to outside intrusion.

Think of it like this:

An insecure connection is like walking a hand-written letter across the busiest street in the world, all while pickpockets and thieves try to yank the letter from your hand.

A secure connection is the equivalent of two people sharing a secret language that only the two of them can understand, and then those two people meet in a locked room, surrounded by fortified walls, security guards, and they are also on an island 800 miles away from civilization, and then they share information with one another.

The point of an SSL certificate is to prove that a website is so secure that no one besides you and the website you’re submitting to can ever access the information you share.

So, with SSL, you will enter your personal information and it will be only be exchanged between you and the web server you are sending it to.

DOES YOUR URL HAVE SSL?

When you type in your URL and it begins with “HTTPS”, then your website has SSL certification. If your website does not have that “S” at the end (i.e., if it reads “HTTP”, instead), then you do not have an SSL certificate and your site is not secure.

You’ll want to make the upgrade to HTTPS as soon as you can. Otherwise, when Google Chrome users visit your site, they will be told it is insecure. And that’s when you run the risk of losing customers and/or web traffic. In fact, data shows that 85% of users would abandon a purchase from an insecure connection. That’s a huge hit on your business.

WE’RE HERE TO HELP

Full-site SSL support is now available for all SAGE Websites. We are adding this security feature at no additional charge to facilitate a seamless transition, and to ensure that SAGE Websites remain the top choice for Google. To activate full-site SSL, users should visit sagemember.com and click “WebExpress” in the menu and then click “Access & Security.”

If you don’t have a SAGE Website and you need to make the leap to an SSL certified website, you can start right here with a free 30-day trial.

Full-site SSL will also enhance your SEO ranking in Google search results. Google has announced that any time their algorithm must choose between a secure site and an insecure site, it will always place the SSL certified site first. Which means adding SSL will let you skip ahead in line with millions of insecure websites behind you.

Please reach out to us if you have any other questions about Google Chrome’s upcoming changes. And also read our article on How to Protect Your Promotional Products Business from Hackers.

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