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December 14, 2016

January will be a rough month for some people. And I’m not talking about the frigid weather. Google announced that it is ending support of SHA-1 certificates in its January release of Chrome. That means web users everywhere – Chrome is used by more than half of desktop, laptop and mobile users – may no longer feel safe visiting some of their favorite websites.

More than a third of all websites may be at risk

Google warned developers for years that it will remove support for SHA-1 certificates. Websites with this certificate are more vulnerable to cyber attacks and spammers. But that doesn’t mean everyone is prepared for this change. In fact, some security experts state that more than one-third of all websites still use this certificate.

Visit one of these websites in late January with the latest Chrome browser and you’ll find that the site’s unsafe. That certainly won’t help you attract customers or make sales.

According to a recent Google security post, “website operators are urged to check for the use of SHA-1 certificates.”

Check your website now

Visit this link and enter your website name. Go ahead, do it now. It takes a few minutes to run but it is well worth the time. When the analysis is complete you’ll receive an overall grade and a report. If it’s anything less than an A, take action immediately.

By the way, one of the benefits of working with Checkerboard is that we can take care of projects like this for you.

Updating your certificate

Some companies are concerned about migrating from an SHA-1 certificate. I’ve read descriptions that compared the process to taking an unpleasant trip to the dentist. Others have said that they don’t know where to start. I’ve found that some companies hold onto outdated certificates because they manage their own websites. These companies are so busy running their own companies that they don’t have time to read the latest Google security posts. That’s not surprising. Not many people find these tech updates fascinating. But we do.

If your score isn’t where you’d like it to be, we can help. Send us a copy of your report and we’ll explain what needs to happen to keep your website functional in 2017. And I promise, when you work with us, it will be much less stressful than a trip to the dentist.