SSL certificate problems

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is a protocol that provides secure communications for such activities as web browsing, e-mail, instant messaging and other data transfers.

An SSL certificate issued by a third party provides privacy and security to transmissions between two computers on a public network by confirming that a message actually did come from the person identified. Problems with your SSL certificate can cause many web browsers to block users from accessing your site, or to display a security warning message when your site is accessed. The host name of your site (the URL you specified when you added your site to your Webmaster Tools account) should match the subject name(s) of your SSL certificate.

Common problems include:

The host name of your site does not match any of the Subject Names in your SSL certificate. For example, you may have added your site as http://www.example.com, but the name on your SSL certificate is http://example.com. To fix this problem, get a new SSL certificate issued by a certificate authority (CA). The subject name of the certificate should match your site's host name. If your site is reachable via several hostnames, use a Subject Alternative DNS Name attribute to list alternative names. For example, if your site can be reached via http://example.com and http://www.example.com, each of these hostnames should be added as a subject alternative name. (You can also use wildcards - for example *.example.com.) For more information, contact your hosting provider, or your site server documentation.

Your site uses an SSL certificate which is not recognized by major web browsers. This can be for several reasons:

  • The certificate is self-signed, or is not signed by a recognized certificate authority.
  • The certificate is corrupted.
  • The certificate is out of date or is not yet valid.

To fix this problem, get a new SSL certificate issued by a recognized certificate authority.

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