A Complete Guide on SSL Certificate - Beginner's Guide to SSL
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A Complete Guide on SSL Certificate

10/26/2019 by admin with 0 comments

A Complete Guide on SSL Certificate


Last Updated on November 28, 2019 by admin

What is SSL – SSL stands for Secure Socket layer. It is basically associated with secure transfer of data over computer systems.

 

SSL is a predecessor of TLS security system. So, let’s talk about TLS here.

 

TLS stands for TRANSPORT LAYER SECURITY.

 

TLS is a security protocol that is considered a better version of SSL security protocol.

Now, TLS is in many ways similar and dissimilar to SSL system.

 

So, let’s try to understand both of them by first going through their similarities.

 

We compare both then we would realize that both of them work on the same three principles of security.

 

These principles are integrity, authentication and data privacy or confidentiality.

 

Integrity ensures that data transmitted from the user reaches its client in the original intact form.

 

Authentication ensures that data is reached only to the authenticated recipient without any hindrance by a third party or fraudulent user.

 

Confidentiality ensures that data is fully secured and cannot be accessed by fraudulent or any false actor.

 

Now, these are the similarities shared by the two protocols. Let’s go through their dissimilarities.

 

  • TLS is considered more secure because it supports vast range of algorithms.
  • Employs message authentication.
  • Supports cipher suites.
  • Use more advanced encryption facilities.

 

How do TLS/ SSL operate?

Before, any connection is setup between client and user its authentication is ensured.

 

This step is ensured by the TLS handshake protocol which ensures the authentication of both parties. When this step has been cleared by both the parties then a secure tunnel is formed through which data is transmitted.

 

After the secure connection is setup two keys are generated which are known as private key and public key.

 

The Public key, as the name suggest, is an open key and can be accessed by anyone to encrypt the message.

Now, the user usually makes use of this key to encrypt the sensitive message which has to be sent.

Now, the message is encrypted with the help of certain mathematical algorithms that scrambles the plaintext into an unreadable ciphertext.

 

Now comes the role of private key which is a secret key and is only used by the client to decrypt the message.

This step ensures that the message is only received by the legitimate user and not some fraudulent user.

 

By now you might have gotten the gist of the story. So, let’s dig a little deeper to know more about its functioning.

 

SSL encryption

Now, the data encryption has been categorized into two types which are:

  • Symmetric encryption
  • Asymmetric encryption

Now, the question arises which type is most certainly used by the SSL protocol? Symmetric encryption utilizes only one key for the encryption and decryption of the data. However, asymmetric key utilizes two keys for separate functions of encryption and decryption.

 

Therefore, SSL protocol utilizes asymmetric data encryption technique as it is considered more secure because it utilizes two different key which makes it hard to access.

 

Now, SSL system employs different encryption of different bit lengths. The most commonly used encryption is 256- bit encryption. However, sometimes 126-bit encryption is also utilized. 

 

Now, 256-bit encryption is the most preferred type due to its long bit length, as a result, it forms billions of possible combinations which would take several light-years to crack all the possible combinations.

SSL protocols

Let’s go through the different types of protocols employed by the SSL protocol.

 

SSL generally utilizes four types of protocol for secure transmission which are listed below:

  • Handshake protocol: It is generally used to setup an authenticated secure tunnel between the user and the client. So, before setting any connection this protocol is used to ensure the authentication.
  • Change cipher spec protocol: I guess the name in itself is self-explanatory. This protocol is concerned with the encryption of the data.
  • Alert protocol: it keeps track of any alert or warning messages.
  • HTTPS (HYPERTEXT TRANSFER PROTOCOL SECURE):  you might have heard about news where google clearly stated that any website without https would be deemed insecure to use. Well, why https is so important?

Https is a better extension of old http protocol. This protocol differ from its extended version because if the absence of the SSL certificate.

Now, issuance of SSL certificate makes https protocol more secure and ensures authenticity of the user.

 

SSL certificate Guide

When you observe any website with a green padlock sign it indicates that website has an issued SSL certificate.

SSL certificate ensures that website is secure to use.

Now, you can get SSL certificate from multiple companies like:

  • Godaddy
  • Symantec
  • Digicert

And many more…

 

SSL certificate can be issued under three categories which are:

  • Domain validation 
  • Organizational validation
  • Extended organizational validation

 

Now, you can obviously choose the type of validation required by you on the basis of the website.

 

Like domain validation is for website which are not used for large scale commercial purposes  they are quite cheap to get. Plus, it does not require any legitimate verification procedures.

 

However, organization validation agents run a proper background check on you before issuing you with any certification.

 

And, its extended version is quite similar but is considered more luxurious bu bridging a more trusted relation between client and the user.

 

Now,if you are looking for a cheap SSL certificate then comodo provides cheapest SSL certificate.

 

Let’s talk about what is an SSL checker?

SSL checker is a technique which troubleshoots any errors which occur in the installation of the SSL system or SSL certificate. So, whenever you are facing any security related issues you can always run your system through SSL checker.

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