As per the CASC, the CA Security Council, a group assigned to monitor the online security system, identified what type of TLS/SSL certificates are needed. While the infographic has covered a detailed overview of the possibilities and how to select an SSL certificate, we bring you some further details that we hope will be beneficial. Before we talk about how to choose between these 5 SSL certificates here are the types of SSL certificates.
Types of SSL Certificates
When it comes to separating the many sorts of SSL certificates, there are two primary groups. The number of domains and subdomains, as well as the certificate’s validation level. With this in mind, familiarise yourself with the four main types of SSL certificates:
1. Single-Domain SSL Certificates
This SSL certificate is what you need if you want to secure a website with just one page and all of its contents. It will not, however, protect any linked subdomains, which you should think about if you have any. Assume you have an SSL certificate for a domain such as www.abc.com. This certificate will only secure the pages of that domain. However, if you have a subdomain, any page information on it will not be protected.
2. Wildcard SSL Certificates
Just like the single-domain SSL certificate, the wildcard SSL certificate will just take care of the single domain only. However, it gives the extra benefit of securing the associated subdomains as well. What is even great about this is that you will not find any limit of subdomains to be secured with the Wildcard SSL Certificate. A single Wildcard SSL certificate can work efficiently when it comes to protecting a single domain and its subdomain.
3. Multi-Domain SSL Certificates
The difference between this and the wildcard SSL certificate is significant. It also protects a large number of domains. If you wish to protect numerous linked subdomains, however, this method will not work.
4. Multi-Domain Wildcard SSL Certificates
This SSL certification includes Wildcard SSL and multi-domain certificates in its work. In other words, you’ll be able to protect many domains and subdomains with a given certificate.
SSL Validation Levels
The certificate authorities determine the SSL certificate’s level of validity (CA). Before providing the SSL certificate, they verify the legitimacy of your company. SSL certificates can be validated at three distinct levels::
1. Domain Validation (DV) SSL Certificates
The most basic sort of SSL certification solely pertains to domain ownership verification. This verification may be accomplished quickly and easily by email, and it will not necessitate any additional inquiry by CA. It’s the quickest and most cost-effective approach to getting an SSL certificate.
2. Organization Validation (OV) SSL Certificates
This is a more advanced way of domain validation. Additionally, it will not only confirm your domain but will also verify your business. The CA will confirm that you are the owner of the domain and that you are operating legally. They are thought to be the most trustworthy certifications.
3. Extended Validation (EV) SSL Certificates
This is more often linked with business websites, and it must provide the highest level of trust and dependability. It comprises a thorough investigation of the company’s history. This certificate must be obtained. The CA will conduct a thorough investigation.
Step-By-Step Guide: How to Choose the Right SSL Type
Step 1 – Has Your Domain Been Registered?
Before applying for a publicly recognized SSL certificate, you need to register your domain name. The CAs, Certificate Authorities that give these certificates require domain ownership verification before issuing certificates. Because domain registration is necessary to create a public website, we expect you to have it already if your website is public. If your domain name hasn’t been registered, it may be an internal server name.
Internal Server Name SSL
If you want to secure your internal server communications using the internal server names, you can’t use an SSL certificate trusted publicly. So you can set in-house CA and get a certificate from there or use a self-assigned certificate.
Step 2 – What is The Trust Level Required
While all the certificates offer encryption and security, they can vary based on the information present in the certificate. The Extended Validation (EV), then Organization Validated (OV), and the Domain Validated (DV) are the three best trust-level certificates for SSL, with the ranking highest to the lowest. The critical question is how much confidence you would want to transmit to the visitors.
- Extended Validation (EV certificate)
- Organization Validation (OV) Certificate
- Domain Validated (DV) Certificates
Step 3 – How Many Domains Would you be Protecting Using the Certificate
Which certificate you should choose depends on the number of domains you need to use it for. If you’re using it for single domain security, you can get the single domain certificate, the standard certificate. According to ssls.com, a certificate wildcard or multi-domain certificate is recommended if you want to secure several domains like regional sites (.com, .uk, .co, etc.) or other subdomains. To cover several FQDNS, fully qualified domain names, you can use one certificate as a more cost-effective option than getting individual certificates for each site. This helps to simplify maintenance, especially when you need to renew these certificates.
- Multiple Domains
- Multiple Sub-Domains
Other than boosting your SEO ranking, an SSL certificate offers several advantages to the users, especially to websites that are selling services or products. An SSL certificate assures your customers that their information is safe. Since there are different SSL certificates, Overall, go for the type of SSL certificate that suits your requirements and comes with the characteristics that you desire the most for your site, whether an organization, domain, or extended validation SSL certificate. With the options of SSL certificates covered above, select the one based on whether you need to certify one or more domains or subdomains. You can select the certificate authority that can cove everything you want at the price that suits your budget. Make sure to make a wise decision after looking at all the options.