Secure your site for Octobers Google Chrome update

29 September 2017

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If your business has a HTTP website which uses any forms, login fields or search boxes then Google Chrome will soon label them “not secure”. Make sure you’re not caught out, or you could deter customers.

Security affects everyone

For too many businesses, website security is an afterthought. Security issues are something that happens to other people, right?

A breach of security on your website doesn’t only affect your company, it affects your users. If their data is compromised then that is potentially a lot of trust – and a lot of business – lost.

HTTP: Not secure

Google deals with the personal information of millions of people and is all too aware of the importance of security. Now, Google is pushing this out to website owners around the world with an update to Google Chrome.

From October, any HTTP website with a form or input field will display a warning in the address bar of Google Chrome. This includes login fields, newsletter sign-ups and even search boxes. The warning, reading “Not secure” will appear as soon as a user interacts with input fields the site.

Download our guide to SSL security

User Perception

A HTTPS website encrypts data sent between the browser and the website. This protects your users’ information. Even if someone could intercept the communication, the scrambled data would be useless. A site that does not begin with https:// does not encrypt that data.

Google intends to warn users with the Chrome update, as well as pressure businesses to secure their sites.

The new feature comes with heavy connotations; if a customer on your site interacts with a form the “Not secure” notification will appear. Once Google tells a user your site is not secure, that’s going to introduce some pretty serious doubts. The sale that was so close to completion will stop dead. That new sign-up to your newsletter may never happen.

Why would any sensible user continue to enter information into an unsafe site? Especially when the all-powerful Google is the one to issue the warning? With Chrome dominating the competition, most users will see the notification.

Securing your website

Best practice for websites is to use HTTPS, and it’s essential if you’re making sales via your site. Making the switch is not prohibitively difficult, with some planning and know-how:

To secure your website you will need to first purchase an SSL certificate, then install it on your server. You’ll need to change all links on your site to start with https://, and set up 301 redirects to cover the updated URLs.

To make the process easier, your agency or server support team should be able to help with this.

Protect your website and your users

Come October, Google will roll-out the Chrome up date. If your website is not secure then your users will know. Your customers may perceive your site to be unsafe. The potential exists to damage your reputation and send users to competitors with secure sites.

If you need help securing your website then BML can help you. We can obtain and install an SSL certificate, even migrate your site to more secure hosting if need be.

This latest move from Google may seem a bit of a bully tactic, but the intention is to protect users and make the internet safer. Businesses and agencies need to start adopting HTTPS – even they are being strong-armed into it by Google.

For more information get in touch, or download our free ebook which explains the impact of the Google changes in more detail.

Download our guide to SSL security

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