The Green Padlock – No Longer A Sign of Security


The Green Padlock: Do you feel safe seeing at the small green padlock in the corner when you look at your browser’s address bar? Well, you might have to rethink your answer soon. Apparently, users are so trusting of the green padlock that phishing sites have started using it!

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The Green Padlock – No Longer A Sign of Security

We have been trained to understand that a website with a green padlock means a secure and encrypted connection. Ever since HTTPS first started making its rounds online, we were told that uses this protocol is safe, secure, and legitimate. Apparently, hackers were also let in on this little secret and had started to use it to their advantage.

Seemingly, getting a certification that shows that your website uses HTTPS isn’t as difficult as it used to be; as more and more phishing scams are hiding behind the security of an encrypted site as well. This makes it easier for a hacker to trick a more significant amount of people into using his/her fake website.

Most of the times, these sites will look like real e-commerce sites (or even a PayPal verification site). In these cases, the website will usually require a credit card number to complete a purchase. The fact that these sites are getting more difficult to vet out means that it’s getting a lot easier for hackers to launch a general phishing scheme successfully.

Additionally, the amount of phishing sites that have made the switch to HTTPS is steadily increasing. According to PhishLabs, a cybersecurity company, almost a quarter of all phishing sites in 2017 used HTTPS. So far, that number seems to have doubled in 2018, and it doesn’t look like it’ll be slowing down.

How to Stay Safe Online?

The idea of phishing sites hiding in plain sight is quite scary; but, there is still something that you can do that can help protect you while you’re online.

To ensure your data protection, so that you don’t fall victim to a phishing website and that your connection to the internet is consistently private, you need a VPN.

Let me explain.

Short for Virtual Private Network, a VPN will both encrypt your data and re-route your traffic through its own secure servers.

Simply put, a VPN will protect you from data theft while making sure that your connection is private and unmonitored/surveilled. With a VPN, your ISP won’t even be able to see what you’re doing online.

But wait, how can a VPN protect you from phishing websites?

To start, most top-tier VPNs already actively work against malware. Since your data is encrypted, VPNs also stops anyone who is trying to steal your data. As for phishing websites, VPNs also block any attempt to re-direct you to fraudulent sites, effectively blocking the go-to method of many online phishers. A VPN is also a great tool to help you protect your banking information while online.

Best VPN for Online Protection

Personally, I suggest using NordVPN as your go-to VPN provider, simply because it offers one of the best services on the market. NordVPN is also very security conscious and can help protect you from hackers and phishers alike. You can also check out the list below for insights on other best VPN for online protection.

#1 NordVPN (2.99$/month)

Number of servers: 3500+ | Server locations: 60+ | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: 6

NordVPN is a Panama based VPN service provider. Hence, it is free of the U.S and the European countries jurisdictions. Due to it, the users can enjoy anonymous networking with its No Log Policy. Double encryption, a variety of protocol support, excellent customer support makes it one of the best VPN in the market. Most noteworthy, the pricing plans are quiet on the nominal side and worth the services provided.

  • Six simultaneous connections
  • A variety of platform support
  • Double encryption for added security
  • Excellent customer support
  • Automatic kill switch
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • 3-Day free trial
  • Unique selling proposition is that it offers hassle-free installation even for new users

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#2 ExpressVPN (8.32$/month)

Number of servers: 1800+ | Server locations: 148 | IP addresses: 30,000 | Maximum devices supported: 3

ExpressVPN has become the market leader in the VPN industry. With its supreme quality VPN performance during past seven years. Therefore, it attracted and retained millions of users and enhanced customer loyalty. All due to services that are beyond comparison. That is the reason it sits at the top position in our VPN table. ExpressVPN is based in the British Virgin Islands. Which keeps it away from the Data Retention policies enforced by NSA, GCHQ.

  • Unlimited Bandwidth with Ultra Speed
  • Dedicated VPN Apps for Android & iOS
  • Provides all VPN protocols OpenVPN (TCP, UDP), L2TP-IPsec, SSTP, and PPTP
  • High-End Security with OpenVPN 256-bits
  • Zero log keeping policy of internet activities
  • 30-Days Money-Back Guarantee
  • 3 Simultaneous-login Option
  • Dedicated VPN App for Router

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#3 Surfshark VPN (1.99$/month)

Number of servers: 500+ | Server locations: 50 | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: Unlimited

Surfshark VPN is ahead of the curve in technological advancement. Surfshark VPN will ensure online privacy for your whole family – simple and intuitive on the outside with a robust security mechanism inside.

  • No Logging Policy
  • 500 Plus Servers Spread in over 50 Countries
  • 24 x 7 Customer Service Support
  • P2P Torrenting Support Available
  • AES 256-Bit Network Encryption
  • Comes with Zero Logging Policy
  • Chrome Extension Available
  • Kill-Switch functionality

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#4 Private Internet Access (3.49$/month)

Number of servers: 3339+ | Server locations: 36 | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: 5
Private Internet Access service provides you unbeatable internet security and privacy. It is due to its sustainable and specialized security barrier based on several layers. Hence, For an end to end protection with its amazing features. That includes; Anonymous IP, high-grade encryption. That is based on cryptographically secure Blowfish CBC algorithm.

  • Zero VPN Traffic Logs
  • Encrypted Wi-Fi Protection
  • Offers all Protocols PPTP, OpenVPN and L2TP/IPSec including SOCKS5 Proxy
  • 7-days Money-Back Guarantee
  • IPv6 Leak Protection & DNS Leak Protection
  • The Internet Kill Switch
  • P2P file sharing & VoIP Support
  • Support for VPN router including DD-WRT Tomato & PfSense
  • Speed Test options for all Servers

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#5 Ivacy (2.25$/month)

Number of servers: 450+ | Server locations: 100+ | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: 5
Ivacy VPN was established in 2007 and gained popularity. It is due to its dedication towards providing outstanding and unique security and privacy features. Hence, when in 2010 it launched Split Tunneling feature. It became the first VPN company to provide such VPN feature.

  • 100% Private & Anonymous internet Surfing
  • High-end 256-bit Encryption for Optimum Privacy Shelter
  • Automatic VPN Security over public Wi-Fi networks
  • Convenient & Fast access to Restricted or blocked content
  • OpenVPN (TCP, UDP), L2TP-IPsec, and PPTP protocols
  • 7-days Money-back guarantee
  • Dedicated Apps available for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS and more

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Conclusion -The Green Padlock

It is safe to say that the days of trusting in the Green Padlock are slowly coming to an end. The idea that you could easily fall victim to a phishing scam online isn’t easy to handle, I know, but it’s good to know that there are still things you can do to protect yourself. As always, my biggest advice to all of you is to keep yourself informed, so you know what it is you’re going up against.


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