What are SSL Certificates?
Security on the internet is a big deal. An SSL certificate helps to ensure that your website is secure. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. It is a way of digitally binding a cryptographic key to an organization’s details.
SSL certificates are optional, so many people for years have avoided paying the extra money to get one. Recently, a group called Let’s Encrypt (and others too) created a free SSL certificate and began promoting it.
These SSL certificates do not need to be purchased. Many web hosting companies use them to help their low-cost customers secure an SSL certificate for their sites.
Google also has been promoting the need for SSL certificates. Google’s browser Chrome marks in the browser details whether you have an SSL certificate or not. Prior to that, the only way people knew you had a secure site is if your site were hosted at https instead of http.
Since security is important, and since SSL certificates can be free, I would recommend that you make sure your web hosting company offers you a free entry-level SSL certificate.