Safari 3.2 Adds Extended Certificates

After updating to the new version of Safari, version 3.2 I really did not notice any changes. Then at one point I connected to live.com and saw the words “Microsoft Corporation” in the upper right-hand corner next to the SSL padlock. I realized that Apple had added support for Extended SSL Certificates to this new version.

I returned to the site but could not make the green text reappear. I tried other sites like my bank and still could not find any other sites that used this feature. Next I tried PayPal which of course has this feature turned on.

I think the green text will help some users be more sure that they are on the right site. There are apparently other anti-phishing features in this new version that I hope to not have to try out. I also think this green text feature will serve as a differentiator between the little guys and the big guys.

It used to be that there was a cost of entry to have a web site. Just having a web site inferred that you were legit. Today anyone can have a web site set up for $2. The next differentiation came in the form of appearance but with the advent of templates and CMS servers, it is really easy to have a professional looking web site. Even then you could look at the SSL certificate and be assured that the web site must be a real company because they could afford to pay for an SSL certificate. Alas SSL has become easier and less expensive.

Now the question is will the cost of extended SSL certificates be seen by larger companies as a value and see by consumers as a sign of legitimacy. Or is all this technology wasted on the average user and all that really matters is a good phishing blacklist?

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