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What is SSL?

SSL is the de facto standard for creating a secure, encrypted link between a Web server and a browser. SSL thus ensures safe passage of sensitive information, such as credit card numbers, passwords, user names, etc. SSL is used by e-commerce Web sites as a means to protect online transactions with their customers. Once a secure connection has been established, SSL encrypts information sent from your browser to the Web server. SSL utilizes the public-and-private key encryption system.

What is an SSL certificate?

An SSL certificate is a digital certificate that authenticates the identity of a Web site and encrypts information that is sent to the server using Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) technology. Encryption is the process of scrambling data into an undecipherable format that can only be returned to a readable format with the proper decryption key.

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

An SSL certificate contains the following information:
  • The certificate holderís name
  • The certificateís serial number and expiration date
  • A copy of the certificate holderís public key
  • The digital signature of the certificate-issuing authority
What is the encryption strength of SSL Certificates?

Our SSL certificates support both industry-standard 128-bit and high-grade 256-bit encryption.

The actual encryption strength on a secure connection using a digital certificate is determined by the level of encryption supported by the user's browser and the server that the Web site resides on. For example, the combination of a Firefox browser and an Apache Web server normally enables up to 256-bit AES encryption with our SSL certificates. This means that depending on the Web browser and Web server that combine to establish the secure connection through one of our SSL certificates, the encryption strength of the secure connection may be 40, 56, 128, or 256 bit.

 

 
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