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General SSL Certificate Topics

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Introduction to SSL Certificates

SSL stands for "Secure Sockets Layer", which is the standard security technology for creating an encrypted link between a Web server and a Web browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the server and browser remains private and secure.
SSL Certificates serve two purposes:

  • They assure customers that a website is legitimate and that the online business running the site is a real licensed business.
  • They encrypt data transferred between a customer's Web browser and the online business to help prevent theft of sensitive information such as credit-card numbers, account numbers, and passwords.

The certificates are issued and validation assured by third-party companies called Certificate Authorities (CA). When a properly issued SSL Certificate is present on a website, the visitor's Web browser shows an image of a closed padlock and an "https" in front of the Web address.

Prior to issuing a nsProtect™ Secure SSL Certificate, Network Solutions verifies the purchaser's credentials using multiple methods.  For nsProtect™ Secure Basic, Advanced, Wildcard and Extended Validation Certificates WHOIS database information and, frequently, Dun & Bradstreet data, articles of incorporation, government-issued IDs, and other credible sources are used.  For nsProtect™ Secure Xpress Certificates an email based domain control validation process is used.  These approaches to validation ensures that a nsProtect Secure SSL Certificate is a reliable symbol of your company or domain's credibility.

All nsProtect Secure SSL Certificates from Network Solutions® are encrypted at 128 bits, and can be configured for up to the 256-bit encryption depending on the Web server. This means that the data cryptographically encoded during an SSL session is at the highest level for the majority of Internet browsers, and nearly impossible to break.