June 20, 2023
5 min read
Get a FREE overview of you entire public SSL/TLS landscape before you go offline for the summer holidays.
As we soak up the summer sun, it’s essential to remember that it’s not just our skin that needs protection. With the peak season for expired SSL/TLS certificates upon us, businesses must prioritize the security and continuity of their online presence. Surprisingly, despite the potential risks, a significant number of organizations continue to experience unplanned outages due to expired certificates. In this article, we’ll delve into the alarming statistics surrounding SSL/TLS certificate outages and highlight the crucial steps businesses need to take to avoid being “sunburnt” by certificate-related incidents.
Step-by-step tangible pain: Certificate outage incident put on a timeline
If you are one of the few, who has never experienced a certificate outage, here’s an example from a real customer and the pain the customer had to go through in order to get back to normal operations.
You would think that something as painful as a certificate outage would be a high priority and thus Certificate Lifecycle Management would be handled with detailed monitoring via automated and efficient systems designed to mitigate the risk of business breakdowns. Well, here are the facts.
1. Unplanned Outages: A staggering 88% of companies have experienced unplanned outages due to expired SSL/TLS certificates. These incidents not only disrupt the user experience but also erode customer trust and damage brand reputation.
2. Frequency of Certificate Outages: On average, organizations have experienced more than three certificate outages within the past two years. These outages can lead to financial losses, reduced productivity, and potential data breaches.
3. Increased Risk and Concern: 40% of SSL certificate responsibles acknowledge a high likelihood of experiencing more outages. Moreover, 59% of these individuals express worry about the heightened risk of outages due to shorter SSL/TLS lifespans.
4. Lack of Visibility: Shockingly, 53% of companies are unaware of the exact number of keys and certificates they possess, including self-signed ones. This lack of visibility hampers effective certificate management and heightens the risk of oversight and expiration.
Solving the invisible challenges
To mitigate the risks associated with expired certificates and ensure a secure online environment, businesses must adopt a proactive approach to SSL/TLS certificate management. Here are the key steps to take:
- CA Agnostic Overview: Obtain a comprehensive view of all SSL/TLS certificates within your organization, regardless of the issuing Certificate Authority (CA). This centralized overview helps identify and track certificates more efficiently.
- CA Agnostic Renewal Reminders: Implement automated renewal reminders for all SSL/TLS certificates. This ensures that certificates are renewed before their expiration, reducing the likelihood of unplanned outages.
- Tagging and Accountability: Implement a tagging system that assigns responsibility to specific individuals or departments for each SSL/TLS certificate. This practice ensures clear accountability and facilitates timely certificate management.
- SSL/TLS Wildcard discovery: While Wildcard SSL/TLS certificates offer convenience, they also pose significant security challenges and per default they will create disorder in your certificate management as you have no visibility on which services use the SSL/TLS Wildcard.
Conclusion: As we bask in the summer sun, businesses mustn’t neglect the importance of SSL/TLS certificate management. The statistics are clear: expired certificates lead to unplanned outages, increased risks, and interrupted summer holidays. By implementing a CA agnostic overview, automated renewal reminders, and tagging mechanisms, organizations can safeguard their online presence and mitigate the potential damages caused by certificate-related incidents. Avoid getting sunburnt by overlooking SSL/TLS certificate management – take proactive steps to ensure a secure and uninterrupted online experience for your users.
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