You’ve certainly heard of HTTP. Every web address starts with HTTP. Once upon a time, you had to type the HTTP for addresses. Now, you can just type www.zdnet.com and everything works as expected.
But did you know that HTTP isn’t the only protocol? There’s also HTTPS, which is the secure version of HTTP, as it encrypts data between the browser and the site. It should go without saying that the secure protocol is the better option. I’d go so far as to say it should be the only option.
Now, on the other side of things, you have the server that hosts the websites. Those websites should be set up such that they are served via HTTPS.
In most cases, you’ll find that should be true of many of the sites you visit. Some sites are built for both HTTP and HTTPS and will accept either protocol from your browser. Smarter sites will accept both but automatically upgrade the connection from HTTP to HTTPS.
Not all sites are of the smarter type. When that is the case, it’s up to the web browser to make the shift. Users might not know to type https://www.example.com and just type www.example.com in their address bar. If www.example.com isn’t configured to automatically make that upgrade, the browser will use the HTTP protocol. If the site is configured