Fix your Chrome “connection is not secure” warning with SSL

Fix your Chrome “connection is not secure” warning with SSL

Britt Pollock's Layout avatar

Have you seen “Not Secure” warnings popping up in the URL bar? Have you heard about security changes with internet browsers?  What’s the deal?

As an everyday internet user, these warnings can be helpful. It is a great way to know whether or not you can trust the site you’re on or feel comfortable submitting your personal information in site forms. On the other hand, if you’re creating or curating a site, you want people to trust your site like that, right? Is your site safe or are you showing “Not Secure” warnings, too?

Lately, there’s been a big step in the right direction when it comes to internet security. It’s safe to say these changes are for the better as we’re working toward a safer internet!

Here’s what we’re going to cover:

What’s changing with Chrome https

Back in October of 2017, Google started flagging sites as “Not secure.” Since then, security measures have continued to progress.

As of July 2018, Google Chrome is now taking proactive steps to help increase awareness around insecure versus secure websites, and Mozilla Firefox is joining the efforts as well. As it turns out, the number one requirement is an SSL certificate. Chrome and Firefox released the updates stating their intention to make the web safer for everyone.

When an SSL certificate has been installed on a site, you can tell by looking at the URL. In Chrome and Firefox, there’s usually a little green padlock with the word “Secure.” Safari has a gray padlock next to the site name. You can also tell by looking at the beginning of the URL itself. A not-secure website will use http while a secure site will use https. (That little “s” on the end just means your connection is secure!)

google chrome secure encryption url bar with ssl on getflywheel.com

These messages are non-intrusive, and can establish a lot of trust with your users because they know their information is safe on your site! On the other hand, if you don’t install an SSL certificate, you’re going to see some not-so-welcoming errors that might cause your users to abandon your site. In Firefox, there are various icons, including a gray padlock with a warning triangle and a gray padlock with a red strikethrough. In Chrome and Safari, either an information symbol or red warning symbol will pop up for not secure sites. Here’s what they look like.

google chrome not secure encryption url bar without ssl on not.safe-url.com

google chrome not secure encryption url bar without ssl on http-badpassword.badssl.com

As you can see, these errors are definitely not something you want your users to see on your site. Let’s explore why these changes are happening.

Google security and why it’s updating

flywheeler on laptop with secure getflywheel.com website in google chrome

Let’s talk about the importance of online security. Many things have been moving the the right direction in regards to internet security, from the Facebook court case to GDPR to SOC security audits. It seems everyone is calling for a safer, more trustworthy online experience.

As I mentioned, website visitors expect a great experience. Yes, they want to see a cool site, but more than that, they want to feel secure and protected.

No one wants to fill out a form on an insecure website – that’s a bad digital experience. Especially in today’s digital age, everyone is more aware of the security they should expect online, even if they don’t know all the nitty gritty detail. People are really starting to take initiative. And especially for ecommerce sites or anyone handling sensitive customer data, you need to follow these security practices in order to comply with regulations.

Beyond creating a better client experience, there’s also some debate that better security practices and SSL certificates can benefit your site’s SEO. Google has been considering security in their ranking since 2014, and there’s lots of chatter about how current practices affect ranking.

So how are you supposed to implement all these security changes anyway and get rid of that “Not secure” message? The simplest means of securing your site comes down to a little three-letter acronym: SSL.

How to make your site secure

We keep talking about SSL certificates, but what is it? SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is a protocol used to secure and encrypt communication between computers. In simpler terms, it helps increase website security by keeping information safe!

padlock on gate like ssl secure encryption on website

Wondering what an SSL certificate costs? It all depends on what you’re looking for and how your hosting provider handles website security. You can get different types of SSL certificates in many places for many prices like Let’s Encrypt (for free) or DigiCert starting at ($157). It all depends on the information you’re dealing with on your site and how you manage it. For example, a simple design portfolio and a healthcare employee portal would clearly have very different needs.

If your WordPress site is hosted on Flywheel, we offer free SSL certificates. It only takes a couple clicks, and you’ll have that beautiful green padlock and no more red error messages! (Not to mention a bunch of other built-in security best practices.) Want to learn how to install a SSL certificate on Flywheel? Just follow this simple, 5-step guide.

If your site isn’t on Flywheel yet, you’ll have to check with your hosting provider to see how they handle certificates. Typically, the process includes a little communication between your host and the certificate authority to get everyone on the same page. Check with your host to see if there are fees that come with adding an SSL certificate or if they have any recommendations on what’s best for you and your website.

Get your own SSL certificate and that little green padlock of your dreams – and did we mention it’s free? Learn more here!

Recap

To wrap it all up, if your site is currently not secure and doesn’t have an SSL certificate installed, you’ll want to fix that as soon as possible so the errors don’t affect your business, site traffic, or SEO.

While it’s a little chaotic for web designers and developers now, this is a really good thing in the long run. Half the internet is already secure, meaning we’re all moving to a better way of browsing the web and transferring data. And the best news is that it’s a simple and easy fix, especially for designers and developers using a host like Flywheel. We’re all just working toward a safer internet, one SSL certificate at a time.

What is SSL

ebook image of the complete guide to SSL what is SSL and securing your websites

Keep your site on lockdown and become an SSL expert with The complete guide to SSL. We’ll go into more depth on SSL and internet security. Ready to get started? Download the free guide today to get rid of “Not Secure” warnings and master SSL!



This article has been updated from its original publish date on October 5, 2017. All imagery in the article was shot and created in-house at Flywheel.

Comments ( 11 )

  1. Nikita

    August 31, 2018

    Hi,
    you really provided a good information on SSL.
    Thanks.

  2. reftan

    September 4, 2018

    Even I faced this issue on app-based site and SSL issue got fixed after this. Thanks.

  3. ترخیص کالا

    September 9, 2018

    very good

  4. Nagesh lingayat

    September 15, 2018

    Thank you for providing such factual things in this blog.

  5. Koushal Kiran

    September 24, 2018

    Since few months we are getting such errors for a new to famous sites as well. It has been the issue that puts everybody away from the information they are actually searching for.

    I think this article has provided everything needed to know about the issue and yeah, Thank you very much for the time you put for us :D

    Regards,
    Koushal Kiran.

  6. Darshan Nagekar

    October 8, 2018

    Thanks a lot for this information
    will work on it

  7. redbox tv

    October 13, 2018

    Awesome content and web layout. Thank you for share this article.

  8. Swift Streamz

    October 19, 2018

    Cool stuff about SSL and all the details about the error message. Thank you very much for such an informative post.

    Regards,
    Swift Streamz.

  9. Vicky Singh

    October 23, 2018

    Thanks for sharing !
    Finally into a proper guided article !
    Bookmarked site for more in future !

  10. Kalpesh Patel

    October 30, 2018

    In simple, SSL is way to represent the browsing of the website is secure. The sereneness of website is achieved by encrypting data so that no one in between the server and the client can access or read the data.

  11. live tv

    January 4, 2019

    For security reason, Now SSL certificate is compulsory for all the web. Thank you for the share awesome guideline. Appreciated.
    Regards, Marlon

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