USi now has an SSL certificate. What does this mean? SSL means that the link between your computer and our server is encrypted. It is the protocol that your bank uses to ensure that online banking is safe. The certificate is to prevent eavesdropping an …

SSL

USi now has an SSL certificate.

What does this mean?

SSL means that the link between your computer and our server is encrypted. It is the protocol that your bank uses to ensure that online banking is safe. The certificate is to prevent eavesdropping and tampering, and to ensure you that the site you are visiting really is ours, and not something set up by an outside agency to capture your data. To get the SSL certificate, we had to provide organisation information, with a named, contactable person – we had to prove we are who we say we are.

If you visit usilive.org now, you will automatically be redirected to the https version instead of the insecure http. The “s” is for security.

You will see a padlock in the address bar:

ssl cert

If you click on “certificate information”, you will get more information about how the site has been verified.

Why have we done this?

 

Increasingly, we are asking people for data. We are asking people to register on our site and share information about themselves. We will be collecting even more data in the future, as part of our plan to build a network of connected, committed trade union activists. We’ll be using the information we collect to organise politically, and keep people informed of things that are important to them. So it is both practically essential and ethical that we provide a secure connection.

Also, because of the revelations about NSA and GCHQ spying, we have become a lot more conscious of the need for privacy and security online. SSL is not completely foolproof – the spies have managed to get false certificates issued in the past – but it is a substantial step forward.

You may notice that in the image above, there is a caution sign instead of a secure lock. That is because some of the plugins we use – for instance, share buttons – do not use https connections.This is a warning to people that there are some insecure elements on the page. We are working on this, and we’re aiming to make all elements of the site completely secure. However, the pages that ask for data, such as the register page, are secure:

ssl register

Because of these security changes, if you have registered on the site and saved your password in your browser, you will need to log in again.

The good thing is this now means that when you fill out forms or pass personal information it will be through a secure connection that verifies that the site is in fact USi.

Enjoy your more secure site!


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.
Author avatar

Walton Pantland

South African trade unionist living in Glasgow. Loves whisky, wine, running and the great outdoors. Walton did an MA in Industrial Relations at Ruskin, Oxford, and is interested in how trade unions use new technology to organise.

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