Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is used for secure communication over the internet. Currently, only 33% of websites use the more secure HTTPS in their websites. Google developers have warned people of the risks they face every time they visit websites that do not use HTTPS. The proposal to mark non-HTTPS connections was done through a message posted to the development website of Chrome by Google engineers working on the browser.
What will be the implications of marking non-HTTPS connections?
Once the changes are implemented a pop-up will appear when a user visits a website that does not use HTTP as notification that the connection has no data security. This will solve the issues of browsers that did nothing to protect their users from unsecure connections. This will limit the threat from cyber thieves who are abusing the vulnerabilities of unsecure connections to steal data and sensitive information. So much data have already been compromised from ecommerce sites that make use of credit card payments. HTTPS makes use of well established cryptographic systems that can scramble data while it travels from a user’s computer to a website and back again. HTTPS provides authentication for the website as well as the server it is communicating with that there is no one eavesdropping or tampering with contents of communication.
The impact to non-HTTPS websites
According to statistics that have been gathered through Trustworthy Internet Movement, only about 33% of website uses HTTPS for secure browsing. The warning from Google will force website owners to migrate to encrypted HTTPS data security. It may cost money and time to be able to adapt to the technology but it will benefit the site in the long run. Many of the large websites that people are familiar with like Twitter, Facebook, Yahoo and Gmail use HTTPS by default. Google has also prioritized sites using HTTPS in their ranking. HTTPS will provide authenticity in protecting pages of different types of websites to ensure secure accounts and user communications that will make web browsing more private. HTTPS is very important over unencrypted networks like Wi-Fi since anyone using the same local network connection can easily discover sensitive information.
Many online stores or e-commerce websites don’t have this option available. This does not mean these sites cannot be trusted, but rather needs more vigilance from the consumer’s side, especially when making online payments.