Your website visitor's data is at risk. If you haven't heard about the legislation altering Internet privacy protections that recently passed through Congress, and is likely going to be signed by President Trump, now is the time to get up to speed.
Website encryption has been slowly increasing in importance with search engines, and has popped into the news from time to time due to data breeches at major international companies. Now, there is new reason to be concerned about website users' data being protected.
About the Congressional Vote on Internet Privacy
News outlets have been reporting that any data not encrypted that comes across the wire is going to be fair game for internet providers to collect and sell to anyone that wants it and there is nothing that individuals will be able to do to opt-out or prevent this from happening. While the time to switch to exclusively serving your site with https has long come and gone, this is one more good reason to do so.
Switching your website to load on HTTPS will encrypt the content of all communications between your website and the user accessing the site.
Safeguarding your customer's privacy is vital, since not just advertisers will be able to buy this data. Companies that are concerned about whistleblowers may purchase the internet traffic history of their employees, see what sites they visit, and any actions they took online.
Even when it's not as dramatic as that, this personal information being up for sale to anyone means that all of your users internet traffic is essentially public, and not everyone will want the organizations they donate to be public information.
How Does HTTPS Protect Your Users' Data
The good news is, there's never been more options for getting HTTPS/SSL set up for your website.
Rootid recommends our clients host their sites on Pantheon, and if that's where your site is then using the free SSL from CloudFlare is a quick and inexpensive option for getting your site traffic encrypted.
CloudFlare can be installed on your website server no matter where you host your site, in fact.
Best part: it's FREE!
If you run your own server you can use the certbot provided by Let's Encrypt, which is also a free option.
If you're on a shared server your options there a lots of options to purchase and install an affordable certificate. Generally, you can get one for $20-$30 per year.
Get Started Installing an SSL Certificate on Your Website
So when should you start?
The process to get a certificate setup is usually quick easy to complete.
Are You Losing Donations Due to HTTPS?
Statistics show that HTTPS drastically increases the amount of money that your website can raise.
Donors have more trust in sites loaded over HTTPS, and feel more secure in trusting your brand.
There are a lot of other ways to increase your donations. When Rootid has implemented these simple strategies for our clients, we've seen increases in online donations by over 100%.