Starting July 1st, 2018, Google will be taking a step towards a more secure internet. Wanting to warn people that they are accessing a website without secure encryption ( HTTPS) Google will start marking all non-encrypted sites (HTTP) accessed on the Chrome browser as “Not Secure.” This is a huge step for the future of the internet, which may essentially lead to the end of plain old HTTP sites as we know it. As July 1st quickly approaches, many people will be asking one simple question…What does this mean for me?
In a security first world, having visitors and potential customers accessing your site and coming across the terrifying combo of words, “Not Secure,” could be a major problem. If you haven’t already migrated your site from HTTP to HTTPS, you might want to get on that. Besides scaring people away from your website, staying on HTTP will also negatively impact your marketing efforts, as Google will be dinging non-HTTPS sites for SEO purposes.
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What does this mean for your security efforts?
Besides having users potentially entering information on un-encrypted sites, this move could also affect your internal content filtering. If you use content filtering to stop employees from accessing certain sites at work, you will need to make additional changes, such as enabling SSL inspection for URL filtering.
What does this mean for your employees?
Security minded employees may be very freaked out by this message. Today, security breaches and identity theft are top of mind for most people, meaning that this could cause a bit of a panic. Let your employees know that this change is coming, and explain to them that the “Not secure” message applies to non-HTTPS encrypted sites, which doesn’t immediately put their data at risk. However, this change is designed to push companies towards HTTPS, so make sure that they know that HTTPS sites are much safer.
Overall, if you haven’t updated your own website to HTTPS, the time is now. This is a major step forward, and since roughly 60% of the world uses Google Chrome, education about this change is a must.