HTTPS as a high-level security messaging protocol

HTTPSHTTPS is the extension of HTTP protocol supporting data codifying with the help of cryptographic protocols SSL or TLS. HTTPS is the secure version of HTTP, the protocol over which data is sent between your browser and the website that you are connected to. The ‘S’ at the end of HTTPS stands for ‘Secure’. For data encryption key length 40, 56, 128 or 256 bit can be used. To provide the necessary safety level codifying with minimal key length 128 bit is required. HTTPS is supported by all commonly used browsers and is widely used while working with web-applications where operation needs safety connection. Using HHTPS protocol ensures safety of data transmitting.

HTTPS pages typically use one of two secure protocols to encrypt communications – SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) or TLS (Transport Layer Security). Both the TLS and SSL protocols use what is known as an ‘asymmetric’ Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) system. An asymmetric system uses two ‘keys’ to encrypt communications, a ‘public’ key and a ‘private’ key. Anything encrypted with the public key can only be decrypted by the private key and vice-versa.

The major benefits:

  • Customer information, like credit card numbers, is encrypted and cannot be intercepted
  • Visitors can verify you are a registered business and that you own the domain
  • Customers are more likely to trust and complete purchases from sites that use this type of protocol.

HTTP’s job is to present data to you, and browsers are the means of doing so. Mozilla’s Firefox browser, for example, understands HTTP instructions and arranges the data as the site’s designer intended. The browser knows what to do when you click. It uses HTTP to do this. But HTTP cannot do much beyond that. How the data travels from Point A to Point B, or even if it travels at all, is none of HTTP’s concern. This is a great compromise if you want speed and elegance and couldn’t care less about security. With HTTPS, the story is quite the same. But when security is a must, HTTPS differentiates one sender and receiver from another. SSL takes the data, going or coming, and encrypts it. This means that SSL uses a mathematical algorithm to hide the true meaning of the data. The hope is that this algorithm is so complex it is either impossible or prohibitively difficult to crack.

HTTPS connections are often used for payment type transactions across the internet and for the exchange of sensitive information between corporate business systems that include electronic data interchange.

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