How To HTTPS WordPress – Why It Is Essential To Secure Your WordPress
Technology has reached up to a level where every person feels handicapped without the Internet. Internet has made our lives simple and convenient. But, it has also raised ample security concerns such as virus, phishing etc. It isn’t a safe area where you can share all your personal information. Even if you share, there are a lot of lurkers who are keeping an eye on that information. But, that doesn’t mean that personal information can never be shared over the Internet! Every problem has a solution and the solution to this problem is, using a secured protocol. This secured protocol is also popularly known as HTTPs protocol (Hyper Text Transfer Secured protocol).
What is the difference between HTTP and HTTPS?
HTTP is a protocol which is used both by the browsers (client) and web servers so that there is a proper communication of the files as well as the webpages.
On the other hand, HTTPS is a secured version that uses the Secured Socket Layer encryption, also known as, SSL encryption. So, before the transfer of any sort of data, HTTPS protocol uses a handshake mechanism. In this mechanism, there is a private and public key matching.
Why should one go for HTTPS?
With the help of the Secured Socket Layer, a private virtual tunnel acts as a mode of communication between the server and the browser. This tunnel doesn’t allow any attacker to steal the data or tap inside the channel. Only a private key can look into the information.
- Data Integrity
Data integrity means that the data that is requested is the only data that is received. If the HTTP link is used, an attacker can easily copy the link and send the compromised data in the form of a phishing link. But, with the help of SSL there aren’t any chances of an attack or compromised data.
- Secured Business
If your website is a secured site then definitely there aren’t any questions about the site’s credibility. From the SSL certificate, one can get all the required details of the website owner.
If you are planning to set up a business and are willing to create your own secured website then submitting some additional documents is a part of the procedure. These documents are latter verified by the Certificate Authorizer. When these documents pass all the validation tests, they receive the SSL certificate.
What is the drawback of HTTPS? Why not every website follows HTTPS despite offering so much security?
Well, the answer to this question is that a secure connection requires a lot of power by both, the servers as well as, the clients and this results into a slow transfer rate. On the other hand, in case of HTTP, the transfer rate isn’t slow. But, this is a very small issue if compared to the customer’s security. These days most of the common ecommerce websites prefer using the HTTPS connection.
Moving to HTTPS on WordPress
With the above information and advantages of HTTPS if you now want to move your site from HTTP to HTTPS on WordPress then, below are the steps to do the same:
- Install the SSL certificate
First of all, you need to buy the certificate for the domain that you own and then you need to activate the same on the server. Now, manually you need to change the URL from HTTP to HTTPS. For eg:
https://my site.com to https://mysite.com
- Change the WordPress settings
In the first step you changed the URL from http to https but, on the next page, it will still show it as http as WordPress isn’t aware that moving forward you would be using the secured URL.
So, for that, login to wp-admin and then go to Settings > General Settings.
Now, in the WordPress Address URL text field and Site Address (URL) field, change the value to HTTPS. When the changes are saved, your website can then be started over HTTPS.
- Put wp-admin on SSL
There is an option where you can alter the wp-admin settings so that it can be accessed only on the secured network. The code to activate and edit your php is:
define( ‘FORCE_SSL_ADMIN ‘, true);
After this is done, you are now directly redirected to the https URL.
- Put each and every content on HTTPs
The above steps have definitely pointed our URL to HTTPS but, one major part is still left. We all would want that every content, image and link of our website should point to the secured layer. If we manually do that then it would be very time consuming. So, for this we have a very simple SQL query. You can get to know about the SQL query online.
After all the updates, you can then see the green lock on hitting the URL
- Remove the content on HTTP completely
After all the changes, now, you can remove all the content from HTTP. The Rewrite engine code can make everything non accessible on HTTP.
What all websites definitely require HTTPS today?
Adding a security layer is absolutely necessary if you are planning to build the following websites:
- Ecommerce Sites: Ecommerce sites require a lot of transactions. In order to maintain the confidential data of your customers, moving to HTTPS is a must.
- Donation Links: There are so many websites that show a donate button. Most of these donate links are redirected to HTTP but, it is paramount that these donation links should be moved to HTTPS asap, as even they contain the confidential information during the transactions via PayPal etc.
- Membership Sites: Entrepreneurs these days run their membership sites using WordPress. The data here is all private and not public. With the help of the Secured Socket layer, there will be a secured environment and the entrepreneurs will not have to worry about their customers’ valuable information. Plus, this would also aid in boosting the customer’s trust on the website and therefore, one can get more and more customers.
It’s absolutely your wish whether you want to choose HTTP or HTTPS but, it will be great if you give importance to the latter one.