What is that lock in my browser?

https-chromeFandor recently switched the whole site over to HTTPS.  We take security seriously and though this took some work, it was the right thing to do.  Since you probably have some questions, we have some answers!


Q: What is HTTPS?
A: HTTPS is an acronym for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure. Simply put, it is a secure protocol that web servers may use to communicate with your web browser. Historically this was used on bank sites, payment pages and for site login but has expanded to search engines and other sites in recent years.

Q: Why did Fandor switch to HTTPS everywhere?
A: We believe that you should be the one to decide what you want to share.  Any non HTTPS connection can be observed by people on your network (so in “public” networks, like coffee shops that includes anyone who has the right tools).  Specifically, we wanted to move beyond making sure your payments were secure to making sure that everything you do on the site is secure.  Additionally, HTTPS mitigates against recent privacy challenges that some ISPs have been deploying (http://www.wired.com/2014/10/verizons-perma-cookie/).

Q: How do I know it’s on?
A: Most browsers, Chrome, Safari, Firefox, and Internet Explorer will tell you when a site or a page is secure. When HTTPS is being used, you will see a little lock icon next to the URL.








Q: How does it work?
A: It provides authentication for a web server and allows the data sent between it and your browser to be encrypted. There are a number of things this depends on. First, there is an independent certificate authority that approves HTTPS certificates. This ensures your browsers are talking HTTPS to the company that is serving the HTTPS. In fact, if you ever get a message that the certificate doesn’t match the site it is connecting to, you shouldn’t use that site.  If you ever see that about Fandor, please email support@fandor.com to let us know.  To learn more, see the wikipedia entry for HTTPS.

Q: What does this mean for me?
A: Not only is your page secure when you subscribe or log in, but all the data sent back and forth uses HTTPS. This includes your searches, browsing of genre pages or watching films . What this means practically is that other people can’t snoop on your traffic. What you watch and what pages you view are only for you. With HTTPS used on all Fandor pages the site is more secure and there is less of a chance the data can be compromised. Mashable has a good writeup here.

Q: What does this mean for Fandor?
A: A couple things, first we want our customers and content partners to be happy and feel secure.Lastly, since HTTPS everywhere is a good idea, search engines like Google and Bing using HTTPS everywhere as a marker of the quality of a site. Things like this can improve search results, so Fandor using this makes it more likely that you’ll find a delightful movie on Fandor when you are searching.

2 thoughts on “What is that lock in my browser?

    • Hi, thanks for writing! The “lock” is a result of Fandor switching to https, and you should see the lock on most secure sites that you browse every day!

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