Getting a digital certificate is becoming more important as browsers start expecting to see everything that is encrypted as needed a digital certificate. And, many things are expecting to be encrypted -- which is a good thing in terms of security. The digital certificate is what proves to your browser that it is created an encrypted link with the right computer. This is important because encrypted connections often contain sensitive information and one does not want to providing user names and passwords to faked site.
The bad news is that setting up a digital certificate is not an easy process. Most people have created "self-signed" digital certificates -- in fact it's almost impossible not to have self-signed certificates. But browsers don't accept self-signed certificates because there is no external proof that you are who you say you are. That's where a public digital certificate is required.
Below is a diagram of what steps are required to obtain and use a public digital certificate. In upcoming posts, I'll describe my experiences and challenges with getting and using my public certificate.