Are all SSL Certificates the same?
There are many different kinds of SSL Certificates so choosing the right one depends on the kind of website and how many domains you have.
Generally, customers will select 1 of the 3 categories below and then that best suits their use and budget and then select the type of certificate in that category that is best for their domain(s).
Uniregistry currently only offers Domain Validation (DV) certificates but we will be expanding to offer Organization Validation (OV) and Extended Validation (EV) certificates in the coming months.
Domain Validation (DV) SSL Certificates (Individual/Personal)
DV certificates are the simplest choice for individuals with blogs or personal websites seeking cost-effective security where visitor trust is not a priority because paid transactions do not occur.
DV certificates however, do not verify the legitimacy of the organization the website represents and therefore is not appropriate for e-commerce websites or those that deal in sensitive information.
Single DV certificates apply to pages displayed when a visitor types just the root domain alone (example.com) or the www. subdomain (www.example.com). This is the perfect cert for individuals or a small business with just one domain name.
Multi-domain DV certificates are useful for customers with varying domains and subdomains which they would like to manage from a single certificate. Small or medium sized businesses using a few different domains and subdomains for a blog with would benefit from these certs.
The www. subdomain is not inclusive and must be added as a separate entry.
A "Wildcard" DV certificate may be purchased for adding several subdomains to a single root domain. These are appropriate for customers managing several subdomains for a business.
Organization Validation (OV) SSL Certificates (Small Business)
OV certificates are best for small businesses or organizations, especially those providing small-scale transaction services, receiving personal credentials or information from website visitors, and/or who are seeking a more reputable form of website verification.
To do this, OV certificates go one step further than simply requiring proof of domain ownership. With an OV certificate, the Certificate Authority (CA) confirms that the business associated with the domain name is registered and legitimate by verifying details such as the business name, location, and address against incorporation or registration data.
Once installed, the certificate will activate HTTPS and the padlock symbol in internet browsers as well as display the “secure site” seal. This makes the OV certificate a more suitable option for public-facing websites that represent companies or organizations, particularly where funded transactions and/or personal credentials are processed.
Standard OV certificates apply to pages displayed when a visitor types just the root domain alone (example.com) or the www. subdomain (www.example.com).
Other sub-domains are not included in a standard certificate but a "Wildcard" OV certificate may be purchased instead for a single root domain to which you can then apply unlimited subdomains.
For customers with several domains, a multi-domain OV certificate may be purchased to authenticate all the domains from a single certificate.
Extended Validation (EV) SSL Certificates (Professional/Organization)
EV certificates are essential for any business or organization website conducting large-scale transactions, collecting confidential or sensitive information, and/or who wants to display the highest level of website certification available.
EV certificate validation involves going beyond domain ownership and organization validation into a strict vetting process that ensures validation is carried out according to the highest level of industry guidelines established by the Certificate Authority industry regulator, CA/Browser Forum and is shown to be effective over the course of more than ten years of real-world use.
EV certificates trigger web browsers to display a green address bar that includes the name of the company or organization that owns the domain as well as the name of the issuing Certificate Authority.
A website certified with an EV certification lets consumers know that they are conducting business with a thoroughly verified website. For this reason, these certificates have become the industry standard for large business and e-commerce websites.
Standard EV certificates only apply to pages displayed when a visitor types just the root domain alone (example.com) or the www. subdomain (www.example.com). EV certificates are not available as a "Wildcard".
For customers with several domains, a multi-domain EV certificate may be purchased to authenticate all the domains from a single certificate.
What is a Wildcard SSL Certificate?
A wildcard certificate may be purchased with either DV or OV validation and allows entries of unlimited subdomains for a single root domain. So these certs allow you to add not just the root domain (example.com) and the www. subdomain (www.example.com) but also an unlimited number of subdomain pages. Essentially, this means replacing www with any other word to create a new subdomain record.
Subdomains are added to the left of the root domain with a second dot (.) and are called "third level subdomains". They are created in your domain's DNS configuration panel and are most often used to create distinction in your web content. For example, a blog, photo gallery or store content may have its own page such as blog.example.com, photos.example.com or store.example.com.
A wildcard certificate is only applicable to a single domain but you may add as many subdomains as you like to the certificate at any time.