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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

What is the difference between HTTP and HTTPS?

HTTP is quite a common language with us and stands for hyper text transfer protocol. This is actually an application protocol that has been developed exclusively for the hyper media, collaborative and distributed information systems. 

The foundation of the data communication is entirely based upon www or World Wide Web.  
Now what is HTTPS? HTTPS is nothing but HTTP secure! This one is much more secure than usual hyper text transfer protocol. And like HTTP, it is also a quite popular communication protocol for a much secure communication over a network of computers. It is quite popular with internet. 
If you see it technically, it is actually not a protocol in itself but rather a layered form of HTTP along with SSL/ TLS protocol. This allows the security capabilities of the SSL/ TLS to be added to the HTTP.  In this article we hold up to discuss the differences between the two i.e., the HTTP and HTTPS.

Difference #1:
- The transmission and receiving of the information across a computer network or internet is solely the responsibility of the HTTP.   
- HTTPS holds the responsibility of exchanging confidential information among the servers and also since the access to such information has to be secured to prevent it from any un- authorized access.

Difference #2:
-The transmission of HTTP takes place through a wire via PORT 80(TCP) but it is not at all secure! Some can easily interfere in the communication between your system and the server. 
HTTPS is a creation of the NetScape and it comes as a built in thing with the netscape browser that uses it for the encryption and decryption of the user’s requests.
- HTTPS is actually HTTP working over the layer of netscape’s secure socket layer (SSL). 
- Unlike regular HTTP, HTTPS transmission takes place through a wire via PORT 443 for carrying out interactions between the lower layer TCP/ IP. 
- SSL or secure socket layer makes use of a 40 bit key size for encrypting the RC4 streams algorithm. 
- Therefore an adequate degree of encryption is possible for commercial exchange.

Difference #3:
- HTTPS being so very secure finds its use in shopping/ commercial sites and login pages. 
- HTTPS though being a standard secure protocol transmits the data over world wide web just like HTTP with the only difference being in the form in which data is transmitted i.e., the encrypted form. 
- When you put https:// instead of http:// you are asking the server to establish a secure connection path. 
- The server makes it a point that the secure and non secure connections are kept separately
When the address in the address bar of the web browser that you are using, starts with http://, it simply means that your requests are being communicated over regular un-secure “HTTP” language.
- It is basically the letter ‘S’ that makes all the difference between HTTP and HTTPS. 

Difference #4:
- Most of the requests of the clients are processed via HTTP. The client in turn gets a response from the server on the completion of a request in the form of a web page. 
- In HTTPS the information is highly encrypted which means that no can have a clue of what you are looking for. 
This type of secure communication is commonly prevalent in those areas wheer security is quite mandatory like the following:
  1. E- mails
  2. Banking web sites
  3. Payment gateways and so on.
To get an HTTPS connection, the server requires a public key trusted and signed certificate.

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