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CostHelper > Consumer Electronics  > Computers & Internet > SSL

SSL Cost


How Much Does SSL Cost?

 
low costLow: Basic Plans Can Start at $80 a Yearaverage costMedium: Basic Certificates $130-$230 Per Yearhigh costHigh: Can Run $400-$1,000 Per Year

The ability to securely transmit information between a website and the customer is crucial, particularly for e-commerce. That's where SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) comes in using a combination of encryption/decryption schemes on the server and the user's web browser. SSL verifies, via an online certificate, that the website to which a visitor connects is the intended destination without anyone intercepting.

Typical costs:

  • The most important cost difference among SSL certificates comes down to basic service versus EV (extended validation). The latter standard requires a stronger online identity assurance process and introduces a new browser display method for clearly identifying authenticated sites to the end-user. It has become the norm for high-transaction e-commerce sites, generally defined as more than 15GB per month of transactional, e-mail and traffic volume.
  • A higher price does not guarantee a better product. The providers below are all well-regarded and boast solid infrastructure and customer support. Therefore, one should consider a variety of factors like name recognition or product expandability. Do they partner with one's hosting provider? Do they offer products and pricing that will grow and shrink with your business needs?
  • Verisign is the giant among SSL certificate providers and is widely considered to have the strictest background checks and requirements. Its basic SSL certificate, which provides up to 256-bit encryption, costs $399 per year. It also offers SSL certificates with EV for $995 a year that will trigger Web browsers with high security settings to display a green address bar with the name of the organization that owns the SSL certificate and the name of the certificate authority that issued it. Check out the company's cost comparison chart[1] to review options.
  • Entrust is one of Verisign's first major competitors and bills itself as "trusted security for less," while offering higher levels of transaction warrantees. Its commensurate basic service starts at $229 per year, dropping to $135 per year with a four-year contract. Its extended validation SSL certificate costs $549 per year or $419 for a two-year commitment. For a complete overview of Entrust's offerings, visit the company's products and services[2] page.
  • Network Solutions brings prices down further by offering a basic SSL certificate for $129 a year, best suited for low volume or low dollar value online transactions, and EV for for $499 a year. A full cost comparison chart[3] is available.
  • Among SSL certificate authorities, InstantSSL by Comodo Corp. is widely used and generally the most competitively priced. Like its rivals, its basic plan, starting at $79.95 a year, provides domain validation but does not authenticate the business behind the online business. For broader e-commerce operations, extended validation (starting at $359 per year) is recommended. Its price comparison chart[4] is the best place to start.
Related articles: Website Hosting, Website Design, e-Commerce Website, Domain Registration

What should be included:
  • Round-the-clock technical support.
  • SSL encryption from 128-bit to 256-bit security.
Additional costs:
Discounts:
  • All major SSL certificate providers offer discounts for multi-year contracts.
Shopping for ssl:
  • Purchasing SSL certificates requires you to first contact your Web hosting company to generate a CSR (Certificate Signing Request). After receiving the CSR, which looks like an encrypted block of undecipherable text, you can then order your certificate from the SSL certificate providers listed above. Once you receive the SSL certificate, you typically need the web hosting company to install it for you.
  • Online businesses must prove their identity, according to the certificate authority's guidelines and standards before it can be authenticated to receive an EV SSL certificate.
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External Resources:
  1.  /www.symantec.com/theme.jsp?themeid=compare-ssl-certificates&inid=vrsn_symc_ssl_Co...
  2.  www.entrust.net/ssl-products.htm
  3.  www.networksolutions.com/SSL-certificates/compare.jsp
  4.  www.instantssl.com/ssl-certificate.html
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