SSL - Secure Sockets Layer

In the early days of E-Commerce, thousands of people's credit card details were intercepted and abused. Thanks to the massive publicity surrounding these incidents consumers are, even today, hesitant to give out their card details over the internet.

To tackle this problem, the Netscape Communications Corporation developed an encryption standard known as Secure Sockets Layer (or SSL), which has since been integrated into most major browsers including Microsoft Corporation's Internet Explorer.

Most data on the World Wide Web is transferred via a system known as Hyper Text Transfer Protocol, HTTP for short, which you probably recognise from the http:// prefix given to most web addresses. Before SSL, malicious computer users used to intercept information as it travelled between the consumers computer and the web server via this HTTP system.

By layering SSL beneath the HTTP protocol, Netscape created a system where the information is encrypted for transmission. This means that even if information is intercepted it is useless.

Thanks to SSL, internet transactions are now safer even than those conducted by telephone - where millions give out their card details every day!

All our Credit Card transactions are transmitted via SSL using a Thawte™ Secure Server ID.

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