Differences between Standard SSL and EV SSL

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We were updating SSL certificates on IBM Domino servers and the question came up about the differences between EV SSL and Standard SSL. Outside of one costing more I was not sure what the added benefits were to using a EV SSL certificate.

The reality is that a Standard SSL Certificate and an EV SSL Certificate offer the same technical level of protection in encryption standards.  The EV (or extended validation) Certificates require a different level of authentication. Not for the user, but for the website itself.
EV SSL Certificate
That lead me to figure out how the end user even knows if the certificate is a Standard SSL or EV SSL Certificate. I had no clue so I cannot imagine how an end user knows.     I went ahead and asked around the office of all IT professionals.  Of course, the only ones that knew actually handled the issuing of SSL certificates for our customer hosted servers.  Everyone else shrugged.  Here is the screenshot difference (credit to Instant SSL for their super easy image)

EV SSL Certificates take longer to issue to the requester, usually 5-10 business days.  The reason sits behind how an EV SSL Certificate authentication is done. Instead of being issued in hours or minutes like Standard SSL Certificates, there is a list of other items performed:

  • Verification of business license and incorporation information
  • Verification of the actual business physical address or operational addresses
  • Confirmation of rights to use the domain name itself
  • Confirmation the requester is actually authorized to request the SSL certificate for the entity
  • Some other adherence to the CA Forum

With this new information the whole pricing model makes much more sense.  Users are getting accustomed to seeing the green name or address bar (depending on browser choices) when using sites.  With the green missing it is definitely noticeable that a site doe not have EV SSL.  But a general user does not know why.

It is a good business practice to have the company take the extra time to validate and provide the EV SSL, but until users know the difference it is a cost difference you have to justify to them.

Needless to say the below is an affiliate link since so many people are readying this article
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