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Websites SSL Certificates Cheat Sheet by

The Diffeent Types of SSL Certificates
security     ssl     webserver     ev     certifcates     ucc


This cheatsheet will explain the different kinds of certif­icates available for website encryp­tion. It’s important to note that certif­icates just encrypt the transm­ission of data and they do not make your website secure against hackers.

SSL Certif­icates

SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. It establ­ishes an encrypted link/c­onn­ection between the web server and the browser. SSL ensures all the data passed between the web server and the website visitors’ computers remains private and secure.

An SSL certif­icate is standard certif­icate that has been used by websites to protect the online transa­ction. It’s unique for every website and consists of a private key, public key and sometimes a CA (Certi­ficate Authority) key as well.

Websites are secured with SSL certif­icates. When a website is secure, you will see a padlock in the browser’s address bar and sometimes a green address bar if it is secured by an EV certif­icate.

EV Certif­icates

EV stands for Extended Validation Certif­icate. This is the highest class of SSL available. It provides the strongest security encryption level available. It enables both the padlock and green address bar. Websites of bigger brands are often targeted for phishing attacks and they go for this higher level of encryp­tion.

Any website collecting confid­ential data like a login, credit card inform­ation or online payments can also benefit using this kind of certif­icate. This gains level of trust for the users and to compete with the familiar brands.

How SSL and EV Certif­icates Work

An SSL or EV certif­icate is pointed to a single domain name and unique­/de­dicated IP address. An SSL certif­icate is set to a unique domain name, company name, address, city, state, country and has an expiration date.

This is great but what happens if you have two or three websites using a CMS/ec­ommerce on a single IP address and each website needs to have its data secured? You don’t need to buy SSL certif­icate for each domain if it’s going to be multi website setup. Then what would you do? What is the best solution? The answer is UCC.


Unified Commun­ica­tions Certif­icate (UCC)

UCC stands for Unified Commun­ica­tions Certif­icate. A Unified Commun­ica­tions Certif­icate is an SSL certif­icate which secures multiple domain names and host names. In a UCC certif­icate, you can secure one primary domain and up to 99 Subject Altern­ative Names (SANs). A UCC can also be used in a shared web hosting.

UCC lets you to use a single SSL certif­icate and secure multiple domains and multiple hostnames within a domain.

In a shared hosting enviro­nment, the UC Certif­icate “Issued To” will only list the primary domain (but the site seal can list the remaining domains in the SAN). Please be aware that any other or secondary domains will be listed in the UCC SSL certif­icate as well.

When you would like to have a multi website set up and each website has a shopping cart, you should use a UCC certif­icate. This works well for storeo­wners who run multiple websites using a single instance of software – like Magento.

Choose UCC over SSL in these situat­ions:
You need a single certif­icate to secure differ­ent­/mu­ltiple domains – both internal and external
For reducing server security admini­str­ation complexity
To reduce cost – they provide huge savings to the organi­zations that need to secure multiple domains
UCC certif­icates are fully trusted as SSL by over 99.9% of current browsers

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