(Last Updated On: December 14, 2016)
Secure your website with Let’s Encrypt free SSL
WordPress hosts quarter or around twenty five percent of all websites that are on the Internet. It is considered to be one of the best CMS (Content Management System) because of its features and large number of plugins available to extend its functionalities. Security is an important factor while you are working upon any CMS. So, today in this article we will show you how to secure your website with Let’s Encrypt free SSL.
What does SSL or Secured Socket Layer mean?
Secured Socket Layer is an encrypting technique that encrypts the communication happening between the user and the website. SSL can make sure that no third party can read the messages thus providing credibility to the website and helps in gaining customer’s trust. We sometimes share sensitive information on the web so it is important to safeguard the security of things we share online. You can make your website more popular in the eyes of Google by adding a SSL certificate to it. Also users feel safe while browsing when they see that your website has a SSL certificate.
What is Let’s Encrypt ?
Let’s Encrypt is an certificate authority that was launched in late 2015 which provides free SSL certifications to websites eliminating the complex process of manual creation, validation, signing, installation and renewal of certificates for websites. It is an initiative by giant companies such as Automattic, Chrome, Facebook, Sucuri, Mozilla and Cisco to make websites safer. To add SSL certificate to your WordPress website you can sign up with the WordPress hosting company that offers in built integration of SSL.
Installing SSL certificate with Let’s Encrypt on SiteGround
SiteGround is a world famous WordPress hosting service provider that experts in providing built in SSL certificates with Let’s Encrypt.
Following are the steps you need to follow to install SSL certificate on SiteGround:
- Enter your credentials and log into cPanel.
- Scroll to Security section and select the option of Let’s Encrypt from there.
- On the next page you will see the option of installing new Let’s Encrypt certificate.
- Select a domain name and enter a valid email address in the email address field.
- Click on install to finish the process.
Installing SSL certificate with let’s Encrypt on DreamHost
DreamHost, like SiteGround, is a WordPress hosting service provider that offers the feature of in built SSL certificates with Let’s Encrypt. Steps to add SSL certificate on DreamHost are as follows:
- Enter your username and password to login to DreamHost Dashboard.
- Click on the secure hosting option under the domains section.
- On the next page, click on the ‘Add secure hosting’ option to initiate the process.
- Then you can select your particular domain from the dropdown list & then check the checkbox with the option to add free SSL certificate with ‘Let’s encrypt’.
- Then you need to click on “Add now” option to complete the procedure.
- There is also an option to add a unique IP address to ensure that your website is rendered correctly even on older web browsers like internet explorer.
For installing let’s Encrypt free SSL on other webhosts
Not all web hosting service provides have the feature of built in Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate. You need to follow a lengthy procedure for those web hosting service providers who are not providing this feature. You can always get help from their support document to install SSL certificates. BlueHost is an official partner of WordPress web hosting services and it allows installing SSL certificates through third party certification companies.
Steps to follow after installation
After installing the SSL certificate, you need to change your WordPress URL from general HTTP or HTTPS, which stands for Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secured. Websites running on HTTPS are more secured then HTTP websites.
To change the URL for a new WordPress website to run on HTTPS, select setting from the admin area and update the WordPress URL and Site URL fields to use the new HTTPS URL. Click on ‘Save changes’ to ensure that your certificate starts working.
To change the URL for an existing WordPress website, you need to change its URL from HTTP to HTTPS without affecting the traffic that it has been generating. This can easily be done with a plugin named “Really Simple SSL”. Install and activate this plugin will help easy transition of your website from HTTP HTTPS and will not affect any SEO value for your website. Plugin will do the changes all the said changes of its own by making your job a lot easier.
If you are working on Google Analytics on your WordPress website, then you need to update its settings with the new HTTPS URL. Log in to the Google Analytics dashboard & after that select the ‘Admin’ option from there. Then you need to select ‘property Settings’ under your website and then change to default URL from HTTP to the more secured HTTPS. Then finally click onthe ‘Save changes’ to finish the process.
Shara DJ, wordpress website developer working for Pattronize InfoTech. I do research on wordpress and other opensource technologies and share my knowledge in my free time. You can contact Shara on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.