SSL Certificate Bug Affects 3m Let’s Encrypt Websites

Weds 4th March 2020: Major SSL certificate bug means 3 million website security certificates revoked.

This issue has affected one of the world’s largest SSL providers Let’s Encrypt. Browser security warnings will appear in websites affected according to the BBC, meaning visitors will lose confidence in using these websites until they’re fixed. SSL certificates help encrypt data transmissions on websites keeping important data safe, such as credit card transactions and personal data. To correct this issue SSL certificates that have been revoked will require reinstallation. The security warning should then go away.

Design for Digital have already successfully tested all of our client websites and found no issues. Unfortunately, Let’s Encrypt only gave its customers 75 minutes notice before revoking these affected SSL certificates which far from ideal. More warning to all those affected would have been better business practice and easier for those affected to ensure their site is kept online.

Check your website for SSL issues

If you’re concerned about whether your website is affected by the SSL certificate bug you can check it online by visiting https://checkhost.unboundtest.com. If it is, please get in touch with us as soon as possible and we can help get your site back online.

Let’s Encrypt has revolutionised the way websites use secure transmissions and SSL certificates. However, it is vulnerable to these bugs and frequently has issues with recertification which is required every 3 months. Buying a dedicated SSL certificate not only helps prevent these types of issues but also brings a further layer of confidence to your visitors when installed. Displaying a ‘green’ padlock in Chrome browsers provides further trust for visitors when viewing your website, especially when taking e-commerce transactions. Take the next level of security for your website’s data and enhance trust for customers. Get in touch today and we can help install a dedicated SSL certificate for your website.

Website Maintenance Packages

Maintaining a healthy website is paramount to our philosophy as a website design agency in Bath. Not only do we design and develop engaging WordPress based websites, but we also provide affordable monthly Website Maintenance packages to help our clients concentrate on their own business. We ensure that your customer’s 1st point of contact – your website – is working effectively each day.

Take away the stress of website compatibility and security from your workload. Let the website experts at Design for Digital help your business’s website keep purring along confidently. Contact us today to get a website health check and quote on keeping your site healthy and secure each month.



Event: Get up to speed with WordPress

Are you considering moving to WordPress and need advice or help? Maybe you’re finding it difficult to manage your current WordPress website and need some assistance? Register for this free event on Thursday 21st September 2017 to get up to speed with WordPress and start using it effectively!

Date: Thursday 21st September
Time: 12pm-1pm
Location: The Guild, High Street, Bath, BA1 5EB
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Google Ranking HTTPS Websites Higher in Search

You may have heard on the news over the last year plenty of articles about cyber security and keeping your details safe online. Well Google has been pushing for years that it wants all websites to become secure using encryption regardless of whether they take payment details or not, in a bid to keep web visitors safe. Google has also admitted that HTTPS (the secure version of HTTP) is now a ranking factor in it’s own search algorithm, so it’s not something you should ignore. This is a big change and one of the biggest since Google’s algorithm change to rank responsive websites higher in search for mobile visitors.

Aside from the search ranking effects for HTTPS, Google will soon display a ‘site not secure’ message or similar if it deems your website needs an SSL certificate (the service that encrypts this data) but doesn’t have one in place. This could put off potential visitors, affect your brand and harm sales.

So, how can you get ahead in Google’s new secure website search update? Well, first you need to consider costs. Dedicated SSL certificates are usually more expensive than domains, need renewing every year and without technical knowledge, can be difficult to setup with your domain and hosting if you’re not familiar with the process.

Let’s look at the benefits of a dedicated SSL certificate first. Having a secure website gives your users:

  • Peace of mind when browsing your website that they’re connection is safe.
  • Payments or personal details will be encrypted between their computer and your server using 2048-bit key encryption.
  • Browsers will display a ‘padlock’ symbol and sometimes a ‘Secure’ message with a green highlight in the address bar, giving extra peace of mind.
  • As the website owner, you will also get varying levels of insurance covering you for interception by the SSL certificate provider. Usually this starts with a minimum of $10,000 and of course the higher the payout the more you pay each year.

On the flip side, there are some important points to note about SSL certificates:

  • Having an SSL certificate on your website doesn’t necessarily secure it from hackers. Don’t forget to update your website frequently and adhere to all security protocols when handling sensitive data.
  • Your website will load ever so slightly slower. Encryption usually takes longer to process and therefore page speeds will be slightly longer. The added security will help improve peace of mind for users though.
  • You will need to change all URLs on your website to use the new HTTPS URL, otherwise you will get browser ‘mixed content’ warnings and your browser and possibly search engines won’t give an improved ranking.
  • Renew the SSL certificate every year or risk losing your secure website status. Forgetting to do so could also mean your website may not load correctly. Each certificate is uniquely generated and therefore needs to be reinstalled on renewal.

If setting up an SSL certificate on your website all sounds too complex, we can help you set it up and provide hosting as well as domain registration. We provide dedicated SSL security certificates and will ensure they’re fully configured with you website. We’ll even check for old URLs so you don’t get ‘mixed content’ errors in the browser. Contact us today if you need an SSL certificate or would like some general web design advice.