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Processing secure transactions online made possible by
SSL, a security protocol developed by Netscape.
What SSL or Secure Sockets Layer?
"SSL" stands Secure Sockets Layer. It a security protocol that encrypts all of
your connections with a web server. SSL thwarts eavesdroppers who could "sniff" your internet packets sensitive information such passwords credit card
numbers. Thus, SSL has made on-line commerce viable all web users.
SSL was designed by Netscape was originally incorporated into company's
web server web browser software. Since then, SSL has been included products from every major developer web software.
Netscape defines its product follows:
Netscape Communications has designed specified a protocol providing data
security layered between application protocols (such HTTP, Telnet, NNTP, or FTP) TCP/IP. This security protocol, called Secure Sockets Layer
(SSL), provides data encryption, server authentication, message integrity, optional
client authentication a TCP/IP connection.
SSL will enable a Web site visitor's browser connect and
transparently negotiate a secure communication channel. Once this connection has been made,
information can be exchanged with theoretically no chance any unauthorized third party interpreting data.
How does SSL work?
Quoting from technical specifications Netscape Data Security:
SSL provides a security "handshake" that used initiate TCP/IP connection.
This handshake results client server agreeing level security
they will use, fulfills any authentication requirements connection. Thereafter, SSL's only role encrypt decrypt bytestream the
application protocol being used (for example, HTTP, NNTP, or Telnet). This means
that all information both HTTP request HTTP response are fully
encrypted, including URL client requesting, any submitted form contents
(including things like credit card numbers), any HTTP access authorization information (usernames passwords), all data returned from server
Netscape has created a server software package called Netscape Directory for
Secure E-Commerce. The Netscape Directory Secure E-Commerce implements server-side support HTTP over SSL including support acquiring a server
certificate communicating securely with SSL-enabled browsers like Netscape Navigator. There are also other, similar products from companies besides Netscape;
these products include Stronghold, Zeus, Apache SSL.
Even after server software installed operating a particular system, the
site still not secure mode. There remains one essential step necessary insure that server has proper security verification: registration that
site's encrypted key pair, generated by an encryption authority (such a VeriSign).
Without having an installed verified encrypted key pair, site no more secure
than any other Web server.
The restriction utilizing SSL or a SSL-enabled product a propriety one... i.e. it
requires specific browser software fully integrate all encryption schemes
necessary maintain security.
The following browsers are security enabled:
Netscape Navigator (UNIX/Mac version 1.12 later or Windows version 1.22 and
IBM Internet Connection Secure WebExplorer (version 1.1) OS/2
Delrina Cyberjack Web (version 7.00)
Prodigy Web Browser (version 1.4b)
InternetMCI (version 1.0)
Microsoft's Internet Explorer