5 Key Takeaways from Google HTTPS Encryption Transparency Report

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Google’s latest report shows the “HTTPS Everywhere” campaign has really taken off

Thanks to Google’s relentless pursuit of HTTPS and growing cyber security awareness, HTTPS has become a standard these days and Google Transparency Report vouches for that. The report suggests a significant upsurge in encrypted traffic compared to what was seen last year. Whether it’s Windows, Android, Linux or Mac, the signs are encouraging.

Here are our five takeaways from Google’s HTTPS Encryption Transparency Report.

Note: The stats here show the traffic directed to Google and its services only.

1. 89% of Google products are now encrypted

Google has never shied away from its Goal to achieve 100% encryption across all its products. Well, they are closer than ever in achieving this milestone. The report shows that 89% of Google’s products use HTTPS. This is up from 50% in 2014 to 89% in 2017.

89% of Google products are now encrypted

2. 71 of 100 most popular websites have HTTPS

For some, it might be hard to digest the fact that 29 of top hundred websites still use insecure HTTP. And some might be happy with 71. It’s just a matter of whether you see the glass as half empty or half full. But no one can deny that 71% is a noteworthy improvement over 37% a year ago.

3. 95% of unencrypted traffic is from mobile devices

The report notes mobile devices as the sources from which 95.2% of unencrypted traffic emanates. The main reason behind this might be the lack of software updates on older devices, taking away their ability to support current encryption protocols and standards. Only 4.8% of unencrypted user traffic emits from desktop users. So at least on one front encryption seems to have taken over as the new norm.

unencrypted mobile device

4. More users are now realizing the importance of HTTPS and encryption

Whether it’s Windows, Android, Chrome or Mac, the HTTPS traffic on Google has taken significant strides in the past two years, especially in the last 12 months.

Let’s see where the numbers stand compared to the same time last year.

Operating System HTTPS traffic on Chrome in Oct’ 2016 HTTPS traffic on Chrome in Oct’ 2017
Windows 51% 67%
Android 42% 64%
Mac 60% 75%
Linux 56% 67%
Chrome 67% 80%

5. 74% of web browsing in the US goes through secure HTTPS tunnel

Around 55% of the internet users in the US use Chrome as their internet browser. And 74% of these users visit HTTPS-enabled websites. This number was hovering around the 60% mark around the same time last year. A thing inhibiting this number is the outdated, unsupportive mobile devices. Nonetheless, there is every reason to feel optimistic about this.

Wrapping Up

For any significant change to take place, it must go through four phases, namely Resistance, Confusion, Integration, and Adjustment. As far as HTTPS is concerned, we’re past the first three phases. It’s the Adjustment phase that’s going on right now.

We’ll soon get over it as well, and HTTPS Everywhere, once dubbed a “distant dream,” could soon become a reality.

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