Author: Geek Computer
Friday, June 23, 2023

What Methods Does HTTPS use that make it more secure than HTTP

Navigating the digital landscape, it's essential to understand web security. Recognizing this, you want to explore HTTPS and its edge over HTTP. With my extensive cybersecurity knowledge, I'll help demystify this complex topic. This article focuses on how HTTPS employs various methods to provide superior security compared to HTTP. 

As a whole, HTTPS is more secure than HTTP because it uses SSL/TLS protocols to encrypt communications between a client and a server, safeguarding sensitive data from interception or tampering during transit.

In the upcoming sections, we'll delve into SSL/TLS encryption mechanics, discuss how HTTPS establishes trust with certificates, and explore other reasons that make HTTPS vital in today's digital world. Stay with me to learn more.

What Methods Does HTTPS use that make it more secure than HTTP?

What Methods Does HTTPS use that make it more secure than HTTP

The foundation of HTTPS's heightened security lies in SSL/TLS protocols: Secure Sockets Layer and Transport Layer Security. These protocols encrypt data during transmission, turning it into an unreadable format without the correct decryption keys. This helps keep sensitive information, like credit card numbers or personal details, safe from prying eyes.

Let's take a closer look at how SSL/TLS works. When you visit an HTTPS website, your browser and the server engage in a 'handshake.' During this process, they agree on which encryption algorithms to use and exchange cryptographic keys.

The browser then encrypts a random value and sends the server's public key back to the server. The server decrypts this value with its private key, and both parties use this value to derive a shared secret key, which is used for symmetric encryption of the subsequent communication.

This secure 'handshake' is further reinforced by digital certificates and electronic documents that bind a cryptographic key to an organization's details. These certificates, issued by trusted third-party entities known as Certificate Authorities (CAs), help verify the server's identity and prevent man-in-the-middle attacks.

Though HTTPS provides a much more secure web environment, it's important to remember that it needs to be foolproof. Users still need to be vigilant about the websites they visit and the information they share online. For instance, while HTTPS ensures secure transmission, it does not guarantee that the server at the other end is trustworthy or that the data will be securely handled once it reaches its destination.

What Is HTTP?

What Methods Does HTTPS use that make it more secure than HTTP

HTTP, short for Hypertext Transfer Protocol, is a fundamental protocol for transmitting data over the Internet. It was designed as an application layer protocol to enable communication between a web browser (client) and a web server.

HTTP is a stateless protocol, which means each request-response pair is independent of others. The server does not store any data between requests. This design makes HTTP simple and allows for scalability, but it also presents limitations when remembering information between different demands from the same client.

One critical aspect to note about HTTP is its lack of security. Data transferred using HTTP is sent in plain text, making it vulnerable to cyber attacks such as eavesdropping and tampering. This concern led to the development of HTTPS, which adds a layer of security to the data transmission process.

What Is HTTPs?

What Methods Does HTTPS use that make it more secure than HTTP

HTTPS, or Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, is a more secure version of HTTP. It is used for secure communication over a computer network and is widely used on the internet. Like HTTP, it operates at the highest layer of the TCP/IP model, the application layer, but it includes an added layer of security via SSL/TLS protocols.

HTTPS provides three essential layers of protection: encryption, data integrity, and authentication. Encryption ensures that the data transferred between the client and server is secure and private, preventing eavesdroppers from understanding the content.

Data integrity protects the data from being modified or corrupted during transfer without detection. Lastly, authentication verifies that the communication is happening with the intended website, reducing the risk of man-in-the-middle attacks and building user trust.

When you visit a website using HTTPS, the communication between your browser and the website is encrypted. This is especially important when transmitting sensitive data, such as logging into your bank account, filling in a form with your personal information, or conducting a transaction.

Difference Between HTTPS and HTTP

What Methods Does HTTPS use that make it more secure than HTTP

The primary difference between HTTP and HTTPS lies in the level of security during data transmission. HTTP, or Hypertext Transfer Protocol, sends data over the internet in plain text, making it susceptible to interception and tampering. In contrast, HTTPS, or Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, provides an additional layer of security by encrypting the data.

HTTPS utilizes SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) or TLS (Transport Layer Security) protocols to ensure data privacy and integrity. These protocols establish an encrypted link between the user's browser and the server, ensuring that all data transferred remains private and secure.

Another significant distinction is how these protocols handle website authentication. HTTPS uses SSL/TLS certificates issued by Certificate Authorities (CAs) to validate the server's identity and ensure the user interacts with the correct website. This process adds another layer of trust, especially when dealing with sites handling sensitive information.

While HTTP remains familiar, the shift towards HTTPS has been significant, driven by growing concerns about data privacy and security. Today, browsers like Google Chrome and Firefox even flag HTTP websites as "not secure," prompting site owners to adopt HTTPS to ensure user trust and data protection.

Advantages and Limitations of HTTPS and HTTP

What Methods Does HTTPS use that make it more secure than HTTP

While both HTTP and HTTPS protocols serve a similar purpose of enabling communication over the Internet, they each have their distinct advantages and limitations:



  1. Simplicity: HTTP is a simple and straightforward protocol to implement, with no additional encryption processes to manage.
  2. Speed: Since there is no encryption to process, HTTP can transmit data faster than HTTPS, especially in scenarios with minimal security risks.


  1. Insecurity: The most significant drawback of HTTP is its lack of security. All data is sent in plain text, leaving it vulnerable to interception and manipulation.
  2. Lack of Trust: With a mechanism to validate the server's identity, users may be more hesitant to share sensitive information over HTTP.



  1. Security: HTTPS offers robust protection for data transmission through encryption, protecting the data from interception and tampering.
  2. Trust: HTTPS uses SSL/TLS certificates to validate the server's identity, boosting user trust.


  1. Performance: The encryption process in HTTPS may cause slight delays, leading to slower page load times.
  2. Complexity and Cost: Setting up HTTPS requires obtaining a certificate from a Certificate Authority, which could be complex and incur costs.

Both protocols serve a purpose, and the choice between HTTP and HTTPS largely depends on a website or application's specific needs and security requirements.

What Methods Does HTTPS Use That Make It More Secure Than HTTP?

What Methods Does HTTPS use that make it more secure than HTTP

HTTPS enhances the security of data transmission over the internet using various methods compared to its predecessor, HTTP.

  1. Encryption: HTTPS uses SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) or TLS (Transport Layer Security) protocols to encrypt data during transmission. This ensures that even if an attacker manages to intercept the data, they cannot understand or use it without the decryption keys.
  2. Authentication: One of the critical security measures in HTTPS is server authentication. The server presents a digital certificate when a user connects to a website using HTTPS. This certificate, issued by a trusted Certificate Authority (CA), validates the server's identity and confirms that the user is communicating with the correct website, preventing potential man-in-the-middle attacks.
  3. Data Integrity: HTTPS assures that the data has not been tampered with during transmission. The SSL/TLS protocols include mechanisms to detect changes in data during transit, providing an additional level of assurance for the integrity of the data.
  4. Secured Cookies: HTTPS also secures cookies through flags like Secure and HttpOnly, which offer additional protection against attacks such as cross-site scripting (XSS) and session hijacking.

These methods collectively create a secure communication channel, making HTTPS crucial for websites dealing with sensitive user information.


The shift from HTTP to HTTPS is vital in maintaining data integrity and privacy in the digital age. HTTPS, with its robust encryption, authentication, and data integrity measures, greatly enhances web security compared to HTTP.

This makes it indispensable for any website handling sensitive information. For more information about enhancing online security, you can visit our Security Service Page.

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