Google's Secure Socket Layer Search Awesome, But Will it Hide Midget Porn?

Privacy has been the buzzword all over the Techi web lately. Facebook has been stomping all over it and then promising to do better, and now Google has made a huge improvement to securing personal data.

In order to take advantage of the new feature, all you have to do is type “https://www.google.com” in your address bar rather than “http://www.google.com”, and instantly all of your searches will take place with secure socket layer (SSL) encryption in place. Instead of rehashing how this is an improvement over Google’s regular search, we’ll quote them here:

  • SSL encrypts the communication channel between Google and a searcher’s computer. When search traffic is encrypted, it can’t be read by third parties trying to access the connection between a searcher’s computer and Google’s servers. Note that the SSL protocol does have some limitations — more details here.
  • As another layer of privacy, SSL search turns off a browser’s referrers New window icon. Web browsers typically turn off referrers when going from HTTPS to HTTP mode to provide extra privacy. By clicking on a search result that takes you to an HTTP site, you could disable any customizations that the website provides based on the referrer information.
  • At this time, search over SSL is supported only on Google web search. We will continue to work to support other products like Images and Maps. All features that are not supported have been removed from the left panel and the row of links at the top. You’ll continue to see integrated results like images and maps, and clicking those results will take you out of encrypted search mode.
  • Your Google experience using SSL search might be slighly slower than you’re used to because your computer needs to first establish a secure connection with Google.
    -From Google explanation of SSL Search

So why doesn’t every Google search take place with this layer of security? Google is famous for caring about speed, so much so that it publicly announced that high page loading times would count against site ranking in its results pages back in April. While the time it took to return my SSL results was minimal, it wasn’t the “blink of an eye” minimal that Google is going for. I’d say it took two blinks.

Just don’t get caught thinking that SSL means something more than it does; pages are still in your browser history file. You still can’t search for midget porn at work unless you use more drastic measures to hide your tracks.

Source: Google Support

Written by Angela West

Copywriter by day, Angela's ultimate dream is to open a Fallout-themed pub featuring authentic Squirrel on a Stick and wait staff with Pip-Boys.
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1 Comment »

 
#1
Steve Ballmer
July 27th, 2011 at 12:29 am

Tech journos are so clueless.

:-/

 

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