Free SSL vs Paid SSL, Which One is Better?
SSL, which stands for Secure Socket Layer, is an advanced security technology. This technology enables encrypted communication between a web server and a web browser. There are two types of SSL: free SSL and paid SSL.
When your website uses SSL, it becomes protected against data or file theft by hackers. The free SSL is called Lets Encrypt, which functions almost the same as paid SSL such as Positive SSL, Comodo SSL, and others.
Differences between Free SSL and Paid SSL
Although they have similar functions, free SSL and paid SSL have several differences that you need to know. Here are some differences between them:
Free SSL has lower compatibility with older or less popular browser versions. If you force the use of those browsers, it will cause many problems such as Secure Connection Failed, SSL not recognized, or Connection is Untrusted.
In contrast, paid SSL has a high level of browser compatibility, above 99%, so there will be no SSL errors in browsers. Additionally, paid SSL supports all browser types without exception.
Types of SSL
Free SSL only has one type of SSL, Lets Encrypt, while paid SSL offers several types of SSL. These include Domain Validation Certificate, Extended Validation Certificate, and Organization Validated Certificate.
The validity period of free SSL is only 90 days, while paid SSL is valid for one to two years. When the validity period expires, you must reissue or renew SSL. If not, your website's HTTPS will be converted by the system to an ordinary HTTP without security features.
SSL Issuance or Activation Process
The issuance process for free SSL takes around 30 minutes to an hour without configuration problems. If you encounter domain name configuration problems, DNS CAA record configuration, or DNS server configuration, the SSL issuance process will take longer.
In contrast, paid SSL is relatively quick in issuing SSL, around 5 to 10 minutes, especially for Domain Validated Certificate types.
Free SSL does not have security insurance, so there is no compensation if you experience data loss or leaks. On the other hand, paid SSL can cover compensation for data breaches. The compensation amount starts at $10,000.
Advantages of Paid SSL
Based on the previous differences between free and paid SSL, here are some advantages of paid SSL:
- Browser compatibility level above 99%.
- Can be used on all types of browsers without exception.
- Offers various types of SSL certificates.
- Validity period lasts from one to two years.
- Faster issuance process, typically taking between 5 to 10 minutes.
- Provides up to $10,000 in compensation in case of data breaches.