Free SSL Certificate from Cisco and EFF: Let’s Encrypt SSL

Free SSL Certificate from Cisco and EFF (Let's Encrypt)

The University of Michigan, Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Cisco, Akamai, and Mozilla have rallied together to provide everyone with a free SSL certificate. Their goal is to secure the whole internet and push towards HTTPS protocol. We all know that the internet is full of hackers, eavesdroppers, tappers, and surveillance. o we need a safe web for everyone. This initiation is also supported by Google, Facebook, and many other big internet companies. The free SSL certificate is actually from Lets Encrypt and it is at full speed development.

The internet is expanding rapidly every day with increasing users and websites. With that people’s vulnerable information is also being public. Therefore we need something to securely transfer it. Now many big organizations have joined hands together to provide a free SSL certificate to websites. This is a great initiative for securing the web. The new SSL certificate will be recognized by almost every browser. This service will start in early 2015 and will be provided by Let’s Encrypt.

It is very good news for everyone if this becomes successful. Usually, SSL certificates cost money. The issuing companies charge a yearly premium but also give insurance. The high-end EV SSL certificates provide higher security with compensation if something goes wrong. However, Let’s Encrypt won’t provide wildcard and EV type certificates. It is okay because normal news sites and blogs just need basic security. Big institutions with money who can afford expensive EV certificates and need can always buy and install EV certificates.

What is an SSL Certificate? What is HTTPS?

The SSL Certificates are a special signed set of protocols that protect the user information on the web. It protects the information from being hacked or being used during an online transaction. Users would normally see “http://” before a website or a domain. For example “https://www.deltadigit.com” means there is no secure HTTP and SSL. But in important websites and pages secured with SSL, you can also see a green lock on top. Sometimes there is also a green big bar before the address. There will be “https://” before their website or domain name. This means HTTP Secure. HTTPS is the protocol that can be used if the server has SSL. In the future, we will also have ” https://www.deltadigit.com” after the launch of Let’s Encrypt.

Also Read: How to Install Let’s Encrypt SSL in shared servers (Namecheap)

The web server users SSL or TSL to provide HTTPS encryption. This means no one can look into your credentials. They can’t hack your login, account, or intercept your data. Currently, for this privilege, we still have to pay money. The prices are according to the security level, which could be up to thousands of dollars per year. It is because the companies would give compensation in case of a hack or a case of certificate failure. The certificate is only valid if it is recognized by web browsers. In the case of Let’s Encrypt it will be recognized by almost every browser. This is because major browser companies are supporting it already since its development.

Good News and Updates

Before 2015 we see that HTTPS is used where there are risks of theft or hacking of personal and severe information. This new giveaway project is going to make the whole internet secure. If everyone gets these certificates for free, every website will install them. Browsing will be secure for all of us. There is one good analogy to explain the security provided by SSL. This is like having a secure line with a user so that no one taps your call, traces it, and messes with it.

Screenshot of PayPal Website with SSL Certificate
Screenshot of PayPal Website with SSL Certificate

HTTPS Certificate installation is tricky work. It needs good knowledge and skill of working with networks and websites. Servers also take a small number of additional resources and power to install it. Many hosting providers are planning to support this program. There is a way of using Cloudflare and get HTTPS, but it isn’t necessary for us now. We will install the HTTPS certificate after it is available and fit for installation.

Update and Implementation

This is 2018, and Google now requires all websites to have an SSL Certificate and use HTTPS. We migrated to HTTPS a long time ago. Most importantly we use Let’s Encrypt and Cloudflare SSL at the same time. After almost 4 years, the project is in full phase, and this is very successful. Almost all hosting providers provide Let’s Encrypt in their packages for free. They are now easily available in Cpanel for shared hosting packages as well. Many plugins are also available for WordPress websites. There are many other ways to install Let’s Encrypt SSL for websites. The initiation was very successful and now everyone can enjoy a secure web for free.

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About the Author: Abhishek Chand

Structural Engineer by profession. Computer and smartphone enthusiast. Tech-savvy blogger and former Gadget reviewer of AP1 HD TV and TechnoNepal.

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