SSL Still Mostly Misunderstood

    Date08 Oct 2009
    CategoryCryptography
    5190
    Posted ByAnthony Pell
    Most users ensure their Web sessions are using Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) before entering their credit card information, but less than half do so when typing their passwords onto a Web page, according to a new survey. Just what SSL does and doesn't do isn't clear to many users, and the way Websites implement it doesn't help: "The biggest issue is the general population doesn't know what SSL is, why they're using it, and it's ingrained in them that it always makes them secure, which is not always the case," says Tyler Reguly, senior security engineer for nCircle, who surveyed a cross-section of users -- technical and nontechnical -- and shared the results of his findings today during a panel presentation about SSL at the SecTor Conference in Toronto.

    Reguly's survey found that while 83 percent of users check they're using an SSL-secured session before entering their credit card information on a Website, only 41 percent do so when typing in their passwords. "It's scary that people care so little about their passwords than they do about their credit card numbers," he says. "You see surveys saying that anywhere from 30 to 60 percent of users are using the same password everywhere, so they're probably using it for online banking, too."

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