Is there any difference between SSL and TLS security?

Are you scratching your head thinking about SSL vs TLS? Are they the same? Is it just a case of ‘Po-tay-to, Po-tah-to’?

Our customer support team is so sick of hearing ‘what’s the difference between SSL and TLS?’ that at least once a week someone chucks their headset against the wall. We buy headsets in bulk… Anyway, we’re here to clear the SSL vs TLS confusion once and for all. Think of the headsets!

What You Need to Understand About TLS?

Many people mistakenly take SSL/TLS certificates to be equal to SSL/TLS. Well, they’re not. SSL and TLS are protocols used to communicate securely over a network. In short, they’re the technologies behind the products (certificates), not the products.

As far as the TLS vs SSL debate is concerned, TLS (Transport Layer Security) is the successor of SSL (Secure Socket Layer). It was Netscape that developed the first version of SSL. However, SSL 1.0 was never released publicly as it had some serious security flaws. SSL 2.0 was the first version to be released in public. It too fell short on the security part and was soon replaced by SSL 3.0 in 1996. After 3.0, there hasn’t been a single new version of SSL. SSL 2.0 and 3.0 were both deprecated by the IETF a long time back.

TLS 1.0, released in 1999, was an upgrade on SSL 3.0. Since then, two versions of TLS – 1.1 and 1.2 have been released. TLS 1.0 and 1.1 have been deprecated as a result of vulnerabilities found in them. TLS 1.2 is currently used to secure communication between servers and web browsers. TLS 1.3 is presently in the draft phase and will soon be released publicly.

As per ietf.org news, The differences between this protocol and SSL 3.0 are not dramatic, but they are significant enough that TLS 1.0 and SSL 3.0 do not interoperate.

History of SSL

SSL
SSL Version SSL Status
SSL 1.0 Never Released
SSL 2.0 Dead/Deprecated
SSL 3.0 Dead/Deprecated

History of TLS

TLS
TLS Version TLS Status
SSL 1.0 Dead/Deprecated
SSL 1.1 Dead/Deprecated
SSL 1.2 Currently Used
SSL 1.3 Currently Used

In short, TLS is the new name for SSL, there shouldn’t be any debate on ‘SSL vs TLS.’

Why do we still call them ‘SSL Certificates’?

Sometimes, people become too familiar or comfortable with some things that it becomes hard for them to get away from them. No matter how wrong these things are. No, we’re not talking about the Stockholm Syndrome here. We’re just saying that we’ve become so used to the term ‘SSL’ that we can’t help but use it even though TLS is the correct way of saying it.

Do I need to upgrade from an SSL certificate to TLS certificate?

No, you don’t.

As we discussed, SSL is just a term. Practically there is no difference between SSL and TLS. Whether you call it an SSL certificate or TLS certificate, or even an X.509 v3 certificate, it doesn’t make a difference. This is because the certificates don’t determine if they’re going to use SSL protocol or TLS protocol. It depends entirely on the server configuration. So, if you want the latest TLS protection, you must disable insecure SSL 3.0 and TLS 1.1 on your browser and server.

What did We about the difference between SSL and TLS?

In general terms, there isn’t any difference between SSL and TLS certificates. Whether you call them SSL certificates or TLS certificates, it doesn’t make any difference. In any case, we should remember the following points:

TLS 1.2 is the most widely used secure protocol today. TLS 1.3 is currently in the draft phase. TLS 1.2 is the secure TLS protocol.

Let’s Compare What is the difference between TLS and SSL security?

SSL TLS
Stands for ‘Secure Socket Layer.’ Stands for ‘Transport Layer Security.’
First introduced in 1995 First launched in 1999.
All versions of SSL are deprecated. All the SSL versions are not used currently.

We hope this has cleared up the ‘TLS certificate vs SSL certificate’ doubt in your head.

Buy Cheap SSL Certificates

Note: TLS 1.3 is finally approved by IETF and its launch with the faster, secure and more reliable encryption technology.

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