Subscribe
Join 40,000+ sales and marketing pros who receive our 4x a week insights, tips, and best practices.
Thank you! You have been subscribed.

Free Assessment: Website Performance Assessment

Start the Assessment
... Inbound Marketing Web Design
Close
website performance assessment start

Free Assessment:

Website Performance Assessment
Start the Assessment
Website Performance Assessment
Free Website Course
View Website Performance Assessment
website performance assessment start

Free Assessment:

Does your website build trust with buyers and bring in revenue?

Take this free 10 question assessment and learn how your website can start living up to its potential.

What the Government Shutdown Teaches Us About Website Security

By Katie Coelho

Katie Coelho also recommends this free website performance assessment.

What the Government Shutdown Teaches Us About Website Security

Since December 22nd, the US government has been shutdown until agreement on the budget is reached.

This, of course, has impacts on many people across the U.S. who use government resources.

One thing that is often overlooked as a result of a government shutdown is websites - specifically the maintenance and updates, including security, of various U.S. government sites.

Free Assessment: Website Performance Assessment

While the people who manage the government’s websites might not be working, and therefore can’t update the content on the sites, the bigger issue is SSL certificate renewals.

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is a security protocol used by a server and a browser when displaying a website. It ensures that all data between the two is encrypted (preventing data hacks, breaches etc.).

In the past two years, Google has made it very clear that having SSL enabled on sites is important for users and a factor on site rank.

More importantly, having a valid SSL certificate is the first line of defense against malicious actors or website hackers who are increasingly targeting government sites.

Unfortunately, with the government shutdown, this is a problem.

With the government in shutdown mode, some .gov sites are currently displaying notifications that no one is managing or updating the content, while others are simply not working because their SSL certificates expired right before or during the shutdown.

With security being more important than ever, what should we all learn from what’s happening with .gov sites right now?

First, Don’t Use These Sites Until They’re Updated

Netcraft has listed a few examples of government sites that are overdue for an SSL renewal, and while there’s not a ‘full list’ of sites that have issues, it’s safe to say any government website should be looked at with a careful eye before you submit personal information (if that’s what you need to do).

Once these site are updated, you should be able to access all files as necessary, and you’ll see this in your browser:

Screen Shot 2019-01-14 at 7.17.17 AM

This indicates that an SSL is set up and working (and you can safely use the site).

Set Early Reminders for SSL Renewal


Without being involved, it’s safe to say that the government sites that are having issues could have avoided this security blip if they set earlier renewal reminders for their SSL.

Though you might have payment on auto-renew, it’s still important (and your responsibility) to monitor necessary site updates. This can include SSL, domain renewals, and plugins.

It’s of course simpler if these all hit around the same time of the year, but regardless, set calendar reminders for a few weeks before each of these needs to renew.

Now Is The Time to Read Up On SSL


If you made it this far and you’re still saying “I don’t really get what SSL is,” I’m sure you’re not alone.

With data security more important than ever, and these government sites having issues with their SSL certificates, now is a great time to get up to speed.


Here are a few resources to get you headed in the right direction:

website performance assessment start

Free Assessment:

Website Performance Assessment
Start the Assessment
website performance assessment start

Free Assessment:

Website Performance Assessment

Does your website build trust with buyers and bring in revenue?

Take this free 10 question assessment and learn how your website can start living up to its potential.

Topics:

Web Design
Published on January 14, 2019

Recent Articles

4 Ways To Recession-proof Your Website In 2022
June 9, 2022 • 5 min read
23 of the Best Examples of Business Blog Design
May 30, 2022 • 13 min read
5 Prep Secrets for a Smoother, More Successful Website Project Plan (+ Infographic)
May 16, 2022 • 8 min read
8 Best Content Management Systems for Digital Marketing in 2022
March 22, 2022 • 9 min read
How Much Does a Website Design or Redesign Cost in 2022?
March 8, 2022 • 9 min read
Website Redesign Checklist: The 12 Crucial Steps You Need To Be Successful
February 22, 2022 • 17 min read
Your 2022 Website Strategy Must Include These 6 Things
February 15, 2022 • 9 min read
11 Pricing Page Examples for Business Websites (Updated for 2022)
January 18, 2022 • 10 min read
8 Crucial Elements Every Homepage Design Should Have [+Video]
January 15, 2022 • 6 min read
What Does a Great Inbound Marketing Website Look Like in 2022?
January 10, 2022 • 11 min read
What Makes a Good Website Design? 7 Award-Winning Examples To Be Inspired By
December 18, 2021 • 9 min read
What Is a Learning Center and Why Does My Website Need One?
November 22, 2021 • 6 min read
7 Self-Service Tools on Business Websites to be Inspired By
September 29, 2021 • 7 min read
Google Shares New Tools to Audit Website User Experience
August 12, 2021 • 3 min read
New HubSpot CMS Hub Starter Tier Released for Growing Businesses
August 6, 2021 • 4 min read
ICYMI: Digital Marketing News Update for July 26, 2021
July 26, 2021 • 6 min read
ICYMI: Digital Marketing News Update for July 19, 2021
July 19, 2021 • 6 min read
What the Heck is Going on With All the Google Updates? (Content Lab, Ep. 54)
July 15, 2021 • 1 min read
8 Best Business Website Designs (Updated for 2022)
July 15, 2021 • 5 min read
ICYMI: Digital marketing news update for July 12, 2021
July 12, 2021 • 5 min read
Too many internal links in content can confuse Google about site structure
July 9, 2021 • 5 min read
Google July 2021 core update rolling out over next 2 weeks
July 2, 2021 • 4 min read
6 tips for building a great diversity and inclusion page (+examples)
June 29, 2021 • 7 min read
Google punts third-party cookie ban to 2023 for 'responsible planning'
June 25, 2021 • 6 min read
8 types of website performance metrics you should look at on a monthly basis
June 24, 2021 • 11 min read