Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificates are used to encrypt the information travelling to and from the hosting server. This is instead of sending that data by plain text – which could be intercepted. It can be used for websites and email systems.

A very simple explanation of how SSL works would be:

  • A browser tries to connect to a website
  • The browser first contacts a DNS server to find where the site is hosted, then contacts that web server
  • If the website is secured by SSL, the web server sends a copy of the website’s SSL certificate to the browser
  • The browser checks to see whether the certificate is genuine with the issuer of the certificate. It needs to be a trusted certificate authority, such as Geotrust
  • If it checks out OK, the browser sends a message to the web server and exchanges the necessary encryption information: a key and hashing cypher – basically a code!
  • Encrypted data is shared between the browser and the web server


Having an SSL certificate – giving your website URLs beginning with ‘https’ – is no longer a luxury. It’s a necessity.

If you run a site where a user has to enter information – such as a store – not having an SSL certificate could harm your business. Users are less likely to trust a non -‘https’ website. Google has been encouraging web designers to implement ‘https everywhere’ since 2014, and sites without SSL’s are being marked with security warnings.

Freelance Computers offer a very cost-effective way to have an SSL Certificate installed onto a website, please contact us for more information and prices on this service.