Google pretty much commands the internet when it comes to search, and their Chrome browser has gained a large following. In fact, according to NetMarketShare.com Google’s Chrome browser is number 1 by a large margin.
Sometime around the end of January 2017, Google will be releasing version #56 of Chrome. Big deal, right? Well, actually yes – it is a very big deal and here’s why. Chrome 56 will label non-HTTPS websites as Not Secure.
The usual thinking has been that you don’t need an SSL certificate on your website unless you accept credit cards or collect sensitive information from your visitors. That may all be changing now. Google has been giving more credence to secure websites for a while now. The upcoming release of Chrome will up the ante by prominently displaying the Not Secure label in the address bar.
Here is how a secure site appears now in Chrome version 55.
A website using HTTP protocol (unsecured) looks like this.
In Chrome version 56 an unsecured website will look like this.
If you have an unsecured website, having Not Secure displayed next to your website URL is probably not what you want your potential website visitors to see. The potential loss of traffic to your website is a very real possibility.
Most hosting providers have SSL certificates available for you to purchase and most will install them for you. There are also free SSL certificates available from companies like Let’s Encrypt and Cloudflare.
It’s only a matter of time before this handling of non-secured websites is adopted by other web browsers.