An SSL certificate is a digital certificate that authenticates a website’s identity and enables an encrypted connection. SSL stands for ‘Secure Socket Layer’ and is a security protocol that creates an encrypted link between the web server and the web browser to protect the end-user. An SSL certificate is made public because it shows that the website is safe to browse.
How the SSL Certificate Phishing Scam Works
Since SSL certificates are public, scammers can also access this information. Many websites are available to check the expiration date of a website’s SSL certificate, one example being www.sslshopper.com
. Scammers will use these SSL websites to find other websites with SSL certificates that have nearby expiration dates and then send fake invoices to renew the SSL certificate.
The fact is that if your website’s SSL certification is going to expire, you’ll likely receive an email from your hosting provider. Be aware of spam emails trying to sell you on SSL renewal from companies other than your hosting provider, and never click on links from a spammy-looking email. If you have questions about your SSL certificate or its renewal status, log into your hosting provider’s website or call them to confirm.
Another important thing to note is that you will likely never be notified about SSL renewal over the phone, especially if they ask that you call a specific number back. These calls are almost always a scam to gain more information and access to your accounts.
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