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There are no excuses for running a website without the addition of an SSL Certificate.

Not when the AutoSSL module included with the cPanel Hosting Control Panel (offered by most web hosting providers) enables you to quickly and easily add a free Let's Encrypt SSL certificate to your hosting account and its domains.

Here are five reasons to use an SSL certificate with your website.

When someone visits your website via HTTPS they will see a reassuring padlock icon in the address bar of their browser window.

And they will be able to interact with your website knowing their data is encrypted whilst being transferred from their web browser to your website's server.

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When you sign into your website's Joomla! CMS Dashboard, your user credentials will also protected by the encrypted connection.

The HTTPS connection prevents so-called packet sniffers from harvesting usernames and passwords.

Google has indicated that using an HTTPS address for a web page will have a positive impact on search engine performance.

Commercial SSL certificates can be costly.

AutoSSL and Let's Encrypt do not require an additional subscription.

Critics point out that Let's Encrypt SSL certificates are domain-validated.

There is no external verification and so domain validated SSL certificates do not guarantee the trustworthiness of a website.

A domain-validated SSL certificate can be added to a website by anyone, even the developer of a spoof website.

Domain-validated SSL certificates do however protect the data of users interacting with websites that use them.

Let's Encrypt SSL certificates issued via AutoSSL automatically renew.

You should still periodically check the status of your SSL certificate.

If for some reason your domain's SSL status has not renewed then you can easily reissue the certificate via your hosting control panel.

If this problem persists then contact your hosting provider's Technical Support.

How to issue an SSL Certificate

It's easy to add an SSL Certificate to your hosting account, its website, email and domains.

We show you how to do so using the AutoSSL module, included with a cPanel Hosting Account by most hosting service providers, at the following link.

Read more: Issue an SSL Certificate.


Issues to consider before you do

When an SSL Certificate is issued then your website's URL will change from HTTP to HTTPS.

There are some resulting changes you should make to the configuration of your website's Joomla! CMS after issuing an SSL Certificate.

And maybe some changes you need to make to the settings of 3rd party extensions used by your website.

If you are using Search Engine and Social Media Accounts in conjunction with your website, then their settings will also most likely require adjustment if broken links are to be avoided.

Users of old devices and/or operating systems may no longer be able to visit your website following the issue of an SSL Certificate - see Target Audience section below.

Sign in using the link below to learn more about such adjustments.


Target Audience

Website visitors who are using an old devices and/or operating system may not be able to visit your website after you add a Lets Encrypt SSL Certificate.

Reason: some older operating systems do not recognise the Lets Encrypt SSL Certificate.

These older operating systems include Apple devices using MacOS X Operating System v10.12.1 and earlier.

Note: v10.12.1 was replaced by v10.12.2 several years ago (2016).

Read more: Some Mac OS versions do not recognise some popular security certificates.

If the majority of your website's users are unable to update their device and/or operating system then you may wish to defer adding a Lets Encrypt SSL Certificate to your website.

You could instead add a different SSL Certificate, one which the older devices and/or operating systems recognise.

Or recommend that website visitors replace their device and/or operating system.

Reason: it is not safe to connect to the internet using devices and operating systems which are no longer supported by developers.

Read more: MacOS Version History.

Contents include:

Recommended adjustment to:
Joomla! CMS settings,
3rd party extension settings,
Search engine account settings,
Social media account settings.

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