The online world is built on HTTP, also known as hypertext transfer protocol. HTTPS are encrypted within either transport layer security or secure sockets layers.
Whenever your device sends an unencrypted HTTP request, it provides some information on what you’re doing. These requests can now be intercepted by hackers because of how prevalent web browsing has become.
Even if what you are doing online is benign, experts say you should always use HTTPS to provide an extra layer of security against your traffic from being intercepted.
Dr Federico Simonetti, the Founder and CTO of Extenua Inc. in an article for the Digital Guardian, says that even with HTTPS, “accessibility from anywhere” means that your data isn’t completely safe.
Let’s Encrypt has a goal of getting the web to 100% HTTPS. In their last update on June 22, 2016, they had a total of 5 million certificates, 3.8 million were active with their active certificates covering over 7 million unique domains.
According to Let’s Encrypt, the reason this figure has increased in recent months has been in part because of the large scale deployments of WordPress, Shopify, Bitly and more.
Google Chrome desktop users spend 75% of their browser time on HTTPS, which is a trend Let’s Encrypt has also seen for themselves.
The Chrome security team will also see this in the not so distant future. While the huge rise in HTTPS is promising, Liam Tung states that figures from Google show that only one-third of the world’s top 100 sites have HTTPS enabled by default. This needs to happen to increase the percentage of people using HTTPS.
The case for using HTTPS is clear: it provides an extra layer of security against hackers. With more and more data being created and transferred across the Internet, encryption is now more important than ever. According to the breach level index 3,724,262 data records are lost or stolen every day. To put it into perspective, that’s 155,178 every hour.
So while HTTPS won’t prevent all data breaches, it will significantly improve the security of your browsing. Hackers will have a harder time seeing what you are doing, which creates a safer cyber world for everyone.
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