Let's Encrypt SSL certificate overview

Let's Encrypt SSL certificate overview

 

Safety and security is a vital aspect to consider when hosting your website on the internet. It is necessary that your website should be hosted through a strong, reliable and managed hosting platform. For over 10 Years d4ce Hosting has been a leader in Shared Hosting in the UK.

What Is Let’s Encrypt?

Let’s Encrypt is an automated, free and open certification authority. Launched under the flag of Internet Security Research Group (ISRG), it has issued certificates for more than 2.4 million different domains across the globe. This milestone took only 16 months to achieve.

There is a good reason for it to be successful. The brains from Akamai, Cisco, Mozilla Foundation, and Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) took the initiative of creating a reliable, easy-to-use certificate authority. ISRG now has some serious support from Google Chrome, Sucuri, Facebook, and Vultr.

Benefits

Integration of Traditional SSL certificates to your website can become rather costly for maturing online business, whereas, free certificates do not guarantee absolute protection. Let’s Encrypt SSL curtails your concerns by giving you a trusted certificate that fulfills all your HTTPS requirements free. Don’t worry about your SSL certificate’s expiry because Let’s Encrypt executes automated certificate renewals. Your certificates won’t ever go invalid and save you the hassle of reissuing, renewing and re-configuring of SSL certificates on your domains.

Let’s Encrypt SSL gives you domain-validated security certificates which are certified by the open certificate authority (CA). It makes encryption easy for your specific domains and, resultingly, web browsing is more stable and secure. LFC Hosting proudly supports Let’s Encrypt as a security certificate provider for your website. Here are a few advantages of using Let’s Encrypt certificates:

  • Free of cost
  • Easy to integrate
  • Minimized validation email hassles
  • No dedicated IP required
  • Trusted by almost all the key browsers in the world
  • Auto-renewable

How To Enable

Let's Encrypt SSL's are for Shared Hosting and Website Builder clients. Please login into your Shared Hosting control panel at https://cp.d4cehosting.co.uk. The click on Domains in the navigation. Use the drop-down at the top of the page to enable ensure you are enabling Let's Encrypt on the correct domain. Once you have the correct domain in drop-down menu, click on enabled next to Let's Encrypt to start the wizard. Confirm the enabled and then your SSL will be enabled within 30 mins. Read the instructions below to force your traffic to use the secure site. 

Difference between a free Let's Encrypt certificate and a paid certificate

There is no difference in the encryption protection these certificates offer. However, 'Let's Encrypt' certificates only provide domain validation (DV) certificates. 'Let's Encrypt' certificates do not support Organizational Validation (OV) certificates. View the following link for further details:

What's the difference?

(DV) certificates can only ensure a secure connection to the website. Anyone with admin rights to the website's panel can add a 'Let's Encrypt' certificate. After adding in the panel, the certificate is added automatically.

(OV) certificates validate everything a (DV) does, while also validating additional organizational information about who is purchasing the certificate such as their Name, City, State, Country. (OV) certificates require the user to respond to an email with a verification code. This code must then be entered into Comodo's website. Please contact support to get either a DV or EV SSL for your domain.

Should you use a 'Let's Encrypt' or paid certificate?

If your website is a business that's processing credit cards or transmitting sensitive information, it's recommended that you add a paid certificate so your users can rest assure the connection is valid and secure.

Simple websites that need the same level of encryption without the absolute guarantee of ownership can continue to use a 'Let's Encrypt' certificate. 

Forcing your website to load securely (HTTPS)

WordPress sites

View the following article for details on how to force your WordPress site to load only using HTTPS:

  • How do I use an SSL certificate with WordPress?

All other websites

You can force your website to load securely using HTTPS using an .htaccess file. View the following article for examples:

  • Forcing HTTPS with an .htaccess file

 

FAQs

How long is the certificate valid?

SSL certificates generated by Let's Encrypt are valid for 90 days and then renew automatically. This is for two reasons as stated on their blog post:

  • They limit damage from key compromise and mis-issuance since stolen keys and mis-issued certificates are valid for a shorter period of time.
  • They encourage automation, which is absolutely essential for ease-of-use. This takes the burden off system administrators to manually handle renewals. Once issuance and renewal are automated, shorter lifetimes won’t be any less convenient than longer ones.

What level of encryption is available?

RSA-signed using 2048-bit RSA keys.

Are wildcard certificates available?

No. This is also no longer necessary since it's so simple to obtain a free Let's Encrypt certificate for any domain/subdomain.

What browsers support Let's Encrypt certs?

Certificates are trusted in all major browsers. View the blog post here:

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