Why HTTPS matters

Always protect all your websites with HTTPS, even if they don't handle sensitive communications. In addition to providing critical security and data integrity for both your websites and your users' personal information, HTTPS is required for many new browser features, especially those required for progressive web apps.

HTTPS protects your website's integrity

HTTPS helps prevent intruders from tampering with communication between your sites and your users' browsers. Intruders include both intentionally malicious attackers and legitimate but intrusive companies, such as ISPs that inject ads into pages.

Intruders exploit unprotected communications to trick your users into giving up sensitive information or installing malware, or to insert their own resources. For example, some third parties inject ads that can break your user experience and create security vulnerabilities.

Intruders exploit every unprotected resource that travels between your websites and your users. Images, cookies, scripts, and HTML are all exploitable. Intrusions can occur at any point in the network, including a user's machine, a Wi-Fi hotspot, or a compromised ISP, just to name a few. HTTPS makes it harder for intruders to get access to your sites' resources.

HTTPS protects your users' privacy and security

HTTPS prevents intruders from passively listening to communications between your websites and your users.

One common misconception about HTTPS is that the only websites that need HTTPS are those that handle sensitive communications. In fact, every unprotected HTTP request can potentially reveal information about your users' behaviors and identities.

A single visit to one of your unprotected websites might seem benign, but some intruders look at your users' aggregate browsing activities to make inferences about their behaviors and intentions, and to de-anonymize their identities. For example, employees might inadvertently disclose sensitive health conditions to their employers just by reading unprotected medical articles.

HTTPS is the future of the web

Powerful new web platform features, such as taking pictures or recording audio with getUserMedia(), enabling offline app experiences with service workers, or building progressive web apps, require explicit permission from the user through HTTPS. Many older APIs are also being updated to require permission to execute, such as the Geolocation API. HTTPS is a key component of the permission workflows for both new and updated features.