HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) and HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) are two protocols that power the World Wide Web. In simple terms, HTTP is an unsecured protocol that transfers data between a server and a client, while HTTPS is a secure protocol that encrypts the data that is transferred between the server and the client. Both HTTP and HTTPS are used to make requests and receive responses from web servers.
HTTP is the protocol that is used by web browsers to communicate with web servers. When you enter a URL (Uniform Resource Identifier) into your web browser, it sends an HTTP request to the web server that is hosting the website you want to access. The web server then processes your request and sends back an HTTP response, which is displayed on your screen.
HTTP is an unsecured protocol, which means that the data that is being transferred between the client and the server can be intercepted by a third party. For example, if you are using an unsecured public Wi-Fi network, anyone else on the network can intercept and read the data that is being transmitted between your device and the web server.
One of the downsides of using HTTP is that it is vulnerable to a number of security risks. For example, HTTP is vulnerable to man-in-the-middle attacks, in which an attacker intercepts the communication between a client and a server and then inserts their own code or data into the communication.
HTTPS is the secure version of HTTP. It uses SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) or TLS (Transport Layer Security) protocols to encrypt the data that is being transmitted between the client and the server. This means that even if someone does manage to intercept the communication, they will not be able to read the data without the encryption key.
When you enter a URL that is preceded by https://, your web browser establishes a secure connection with the web server. This process is called the SSL/TLS handshake, and it involves the exchange of a series of messages between the client and the server to establish a secure connection.
One of the main advantages of using HTTPS is that it provides a layer of security that protects your data from unauthorized access. For example, if you are entering sensitive information such as your credit card details or personal information into a website, using HTTPS ensures that this information is encrypted and cannot be intercepted by a third party.
Another advantage of using HTTPS is that it can improve your website's search engine rankings. Google has stated that HTTPS is a ranking signal, meaning that websites that use HTTPS may appear higher in search results than those that do not.
Differences Between HTTP and HTTPS
The main difference between HTTP and HTTPS is that HTTPS is a secure protocol that uses encryption to protect data that is being transmitted between the client and the server. This encryption is achieved using SSL/TLS protocols.
In addition to encryption, HTTPS also provides other security features such as server authentication and data integrity. Server authentication ensures that the client is communicating with the correct web server, while data integrity ensures that the data that is being transmitted has not been tampered with in transit.
While HTTP is still widely used, it is becoming increasingly common for websites to use HTTPS. This is partly due to the security benefits that HTTPS provides, but also because of the growing importance of privacy and security on the web.
In summary, HTTP and HTTPS are two different protocols that are used to transfer data between a client and a server. HTTP is an unsecured protocol that is vulnerable to security risks, while HTTPS is a secure protocol that encrypts data to protect it from unauthorized access. While HTTPS may require additional resources to implement, it is becoming increasingly important for websites to provide secure connections to their users.