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SSL certificate provider

What are the main things to consider when choosing between SSL certificates from different providers? I find they vary in price incredibly.

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The main difference is the logo you get to display on your site to convey supposed trust. Some of the more expensive providers like VeriSign do background checks on your company to provide an extra level of security.

In reality the level of security is based on the encryption algorithm used by your server and not the certification providers. You can generate a certificate yourself that works the same but users will see a security warning when they browse to your site. What the certificate providers do is sign it to provide external validation that most browsers recognize so the warning isn't displayed. You just want to make sure that the provider you go with is supported by most browsers. I use a Comodo one and haven't had any problems.

The other difference in price relates to the amount of domains that the certificate can be used with. The cheapest ones can only be used with one domain and that doesn't include sub-domains. If you need to secure multiple domains or sub-domains then you can purchase ones that cover that for a larger fee.

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