HTTP stands for hypertext transfer protocol. It is a way to send data over the Internet. HTTPS stands for secure . Adding the S (secure) indicates that the data is encrypted during transmission. Anyone who intercepts HTTP data can see at what is being sent. If https is used, the interceptor can not see the data that is being sent.
What is a HTTPS connection
Hypertext Transfer Protocol over Secure Socket Layer, abbreviated as HTTPS, is an extension to the HTTP protocol with the aim of a secure exchange of data.
HTTPS connection is a normal HTTP connection on top of an SSL connection. The SSL connection encrypts the HTTP traffic, making the traffic, if it is intercepted, impossible to read without cracking the encryption algorithm. This is in contrast to a normal HTTP connection where the traffic is sent as text over the connection, making it possible to intercept the data without cracking.
By appointment HTTPS traffic is carried by default on port 443, assigned by IANA.
Because the data on both sides go through a secure connection, both the server and the client (browser) has to encrypt and decrypt their data.
HTTPS is often used in payment transactions by credit card or internet banking. But also on exchange or transmission or storage of sensitive personal data such as name, address, date of birth and other personal data. Many popular sites such as Google, Facebook, Twitter and many more support HTTPS connections. In some cases HTTPS connections are not enabled by default so the user has to do this manually by going to his profile settings on te website.
What should I use, HTTP or HTTPS?
We recommend that you always use a HTTPS connection whenever it’s available. This way you know for sure that the data that you send over internet is encrypted and can’t be intercepted. This way you will know for sure that your login information, passwords, and any other data is sage.
If you use the Chrome browser, then you can install the extension HTTPS Everywhere to force the websites to use HTTPS over HTTP. You can download the same plugin for Firefox and Opera from the developers site.
How do I recognize a HTTPS connection?
You can recognize a secure HTTPS connection from the green bar (or a lock icon) in the URL. But not every browser displays a secure connection the same way. Here are some examples of how different browsers let’s you know that the connection is secure.
Because there are different types of SSL certificates for HTTPS connections, the way the browser display the secure connection can change. But most of the time they will look like the examples above.