How to install a wildcard SSL certificate on a FortiGate is a topic that pops up in conversation with our customers once in a blue moon. Heck, you may even be one of them! There are a few different reasons why you may want to install an SSL/TLS certificate on FortiGate — for example, it could have to do with wanting to secure your communications via a virtual private network (VPN).
A lot of terms float around the infosec industry relating to website security. Domain validation certificates. Wildcard SSL certificates. OV wildcard SSL certificates. As someone who may not specialize in IT security for information security, these terms and acronyms may be a bit challenging to remember or, perhaps, even a bit daunting. Luckily, you have us to help you.
What Are OV Wildcard SSL Certificates?
Since you searched for something akin to “Exchange 2016 wildcard certificate” or “exchange wildcard certificate,” we can only assume that you’re investigating ways to protect all of your website’s subdomains and are using Microsoft Exchange Server. This could include servers such as Exchange 2010 or Exchange 2016.
Simple enough. We’ll start with a few of the basics and will tell you how a wildcard SSL certificate can benefit your organization.
Wildcard SSL certificates are incredibly versatile SSL certificates. They can secure a single domain and all of its subdomains at a designated level. They’re a great fit for smaller companies and shared hosting environments, but there are some drawbacks to using them, too. That’s why, in this article, we’ll explain what wildcard SSL certificates are, how they work, and what the pros and cons of wildcard SSL certificates are.
Imagine you’ve got a multitude of subdomains you want to secure but also don’t want to deal with managing individual certificates to cover each one. What do you do? You use a wildcard SSL certificate. But what exactly is a wildcard certificate? How does a wildcard certificate work, and how much does it cost?
How Do Wildcard Certificates Work?
Once in a while, we get an uncommon question such as “what is a double subdomain wildcard” or “what is a double wildcard SSL certificate” and how do you get one? And our response is usually some combination of “what do you mean by double subdomain?” and “no, a double wildcard SSL certificate is not really a thing.” Ergo, you can’t get one. Yeah, that’s the sound of your bubble bursting.
A wildcard SSL certificate, or a wildcard domain SSL certificate as some people call it, is a special variant of SSL certificate that’s specifically designed to secure subdomains. A wildcard character in programming represents a variable that can be anything within a certain range. SSL/TLS is no different. The asterisk stands in at the subdomain level you’re trying to secure.
Having wildcard(*) SSL certificate in common name (CN) issues? Here’s what you can do about it
Are you having issues with your wildcard SSL certificate, or have you seen a message akin to “WILDCARD(*) SSL CERTIFICATE IN COMMON NAME (CN)?” The second half of this question is actually a fairly misleading one because it’s a hyper-specific error that is really just a variant of a more common wildcard SSL error. So, if you have a wildcard SSL certificate installed on your server and you’re running into this issue, keep reading.
An In-Depth Look at Why a Wildcard SSL Certificate Causes a Domain Mismatch Error on a Second Level Subdomain
We know, you’re here because your wildcard SSL is not working on a second level subdomain for some reason. To help you understand why, we first need to tell you a bit about wildcard SSL certificates and what they do and don’t secure. The digital certificate industry is, at times, needlessly opaque about what its products actually do. The wildcard is one of the biggest offenders. It’s often marketed as securing “unlimited subdomains.” And that’s partially true — with one important caveat:
Your guide on how to effectively install a wildcard SSL certificate on your Microsoft server
Needing to know how to install a wildcard SSL certificate on IIS but aren’t sure where to start? No worries. We’ve got you covered. Heck, we’ve even included some screenshots of the steps to help you along the way. We’re no strangers to this process — we’ve even written other resources such as how to install wildcard SSL certificates on multiple servers.