Why Should You Pay For an SSL Certificate? Paid vs Free SSL

SSL Certificate
In the event of having your own website, you’ll need to have an SSL certificate. From 2014, Google regularly rewarded sites with SSL certificates with higher search engine results.

In the event that you have not secured your certificate three years later in a nutshell, you’re behind in the game of web ownership and most probably lost when it comes to being on the first page of results on Google. Finding the need over the want of having an SSL certificate for a site is a number of blurred pages with a whole lot of meaning in between the lines.

What is SSL?

SSL Certificate

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is a global security standard that permits secure communications between a web browser and a web server. Millions of digital individuals and organizations use it to minimize the danger of sensitive data (such as credit card numbers, usernames, passwords, and emails) being stolen or altered by hackers and identity thieves.

SSL certificates have been used to authenticate the integrity of a website and provide a protected, encrypted connection for some time now. Users on unsecured sites are more likely to have their privacy violated if they don’t have an SSL certificate. To ensure that you are able to have a secure connection away from any type of violation after the installation of the SSL (also known as a digital certificate) to the web server, it will initially serve two functions:

  • It verifies the website’s legitimacy thus assuring visitors to the site that they aren’t visiting a fraudulent site.
  • It encodes the information that is sent over the internet.


Why pay for an SSL Certificate?

There is no such thing as true freedom in life as there is always a snag. The same goes for SSL certificates. Indeed, a free SSL certificate is available, but it is severely limited. As a result, the discussion over whether to use a free or purchased SSL certificate is a little more nuanced than it appears. The protection regulation is the most compelling argument to invest in an SSL certificate rather than to use a free version. You’ll receive superior liability protection with a purchased certificate. It, therefore, means that you have been covered based upon chosen protection level in the event of a security breach.

Are all SSL Certificates created equal?

When it comes to the creation of SSL certificates, a variety of SSL certificates have been made available, it all depends on the number of domain names or sub-domains held, such as:

  • Single-A single top-level domain name or sub-domain name that is secured
  • Wild Card – includes a single domain and all of its sub-domains indefinitely
  • Multi-Domain – protects a number of domain names

Not all SSL Certificates are created equal as they all differ in one way or another. There are namely three Certificates that are in use worldwide. Each certificate has the same encryption level as a way of saying that what differs are the screening and verification methods required to receive the certificate. The three certificates used today are; Extended Validation (EV SSL), Organization Validated (OV SSL), and Domain Validated SSL (DV SSL).

Domain Validation – Referring to the cheapest package, and it includes basic encrypting and registration verification of the domain registrar. It can take anywhere from minimal minutes to many hours to get this type of certificate.

Organization Validation – In terms of basic encryption and title validation of the domain registrar, the owner’s personal information (such as contact details) is verified. It can take anywhere from a few hours to days to get this type of certificate.

Extended Validation (EV) – This certificate reports the highest level of security due to the rigorous investigation that takes place before it is granted (as stipulated mostly by the SSL certification industry’s regulatory consortium). The legal, physical, and practical presentation of the organization, in addition to web host registration and organization authentication, the identity validation process should normally take a few days to so many weeks just to get the type of certificate.

Are there any differences between free SSL Certificates and paid SSL Certificates?

SSL Certificates

There are two sorts of SSL certificates, as you are surely aware. One being the ‘Free SSL Certificate,’ which, as the name implies, is free. The other is referred to as an ‘SSL Certificate’ and requires payment.

On the basis of a Free SSL Certificate is that there is no price tag attached to these certificates. The goal of making an SSL certificate available for free was to ensure that all websites could use HTTPS. There are two types of free SSL certificates. Self-Signed Certificates are those that do not require the signature of a Certificate Authority. They are officially signed by that of the holder. The second form of free SSL certificate accessible in that industry, but at the other end, is signed by a Certificate Authority (CA).

When it comes to paid SSL Certificates, it is viewed as a trusted certification authority that provides and verifies funded certificates (CA). You can buy it straight from the Certificate Authority’s website or from third-party businesses known as “Resellers.”

Also read, What Is Server Management Definition, Best Practices, and Best Software

In terms of encryption, a free SSL certificate offers a similar degree of protection as a licensed certificate. The most important differences between a free SSL and a paid SSL certificate include the following:

1. Warranty:

With a free SSL certificate, you are absolutely out of luck if something unexpected happens on the CA’s end — such as a catastrophic breakdown, for example. Paid SSL certificates wouldn’t have such a drawback because they’re protected by warranties that range from $10,000 to $1.75 million.

2. The Types of Certificates:

Only Domain Validation (DV) is available with free SSL certificates. Even the most basic degree of authenticity is provided by DV certificates. They’re typically utilized for platforms like small web pages and blogs. Organization Validation (OV) and Extended Validation (EV) certificates are not available with free SSL certificates. The purchased SSL certificates, on the other hand, include OV and EV alternatives, which are essential for protecting commercial websites.

3. Level of Confidence:

As previously stated, the free certificates only help with domain-level validation. If you want OV and EV certificates, you’ll have no choice but to pay for SSL certificates. Visual signs like the business name in the URL and Certificate information, as well as enhanced site seals, are included with OV and EV certifications. Free SSL certificates, on the other hand, do not provide these benefits.

4. Term of Validity:

Prominent CAs give 30-90-day free Certificate authority. As a rule, the certificate must always be renewed every 30-90 days by the site’s owner. They can be granted for a term of 1-2 years in the scenario of paid certificates.


Great website security, like most things, does not come cheap. A price tag of “free” is always appealing, but in the context of SSL certificates, a free version will suffice. However, there is a reason why many businesses opt to safeguard themselves, their brands, and their consumers by achieving high SSL certificates from a trusted CA in this case being a paid SSL Certificate. However, with a free SSL, this is your only choice.

A basic SSL certificate will suffice if you’re only hosting a website, blog, or pamphlet site. They do, then again, offer a similar level of security when having bought SSL certificates. It is simple to understand why there’s such a clear winner in the free vs purchased SSL certificate discussion.

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