The Internet is a global network consisting of a tremendous amount of information available for all users via requests on different websites. More than 50% of the world’s population is constantly using the Internet, and this number is only increasing due to mobile traffic 5G. Secure encryption on browser is getting more and more important.
The Internet, in easy words, is a connection between computers from all over the world. To ensure this connection, there are numerous internetworking protocols. These protocols consist of interface rules and agreements, making unique information transferring methods and mistakes dealing with typically between computer and server or between computer and computer.
There are several classification systems for protocols: a seven-staged OSI model and a four-staged TCP/IP model.
To navigate in the world of information and to make requests effortlessly, web browsers were created. The most famous browsers are (starting from the most popular): Google Chrome, Opera, Mozilla Firefox, UC, Safari, Internet Explorer.
Safety of transferred information without changes and the full content is the primary purpose of all browsers; data encryption was created. Secure encryption is information transformation to protect it from non-authorized users by providing the key to the authorized users. The primary purpose of encryption is, of course, confidentiality.
Encryption in Browsers
The HTTP protocol is the most common one in the Browsers (user’s agents) and is used to get information from a website. HTTP helps Browser download websites and servers (where this website is located) to receive information inserted by a user on a website. HTTP does not have any encryption, and all communication is sent in the usual way.
The hacker can step in data transporting and steal it or redirect them to any harmful link. There is a safer solution with a safety add-on– HTTPS (Hypertext Transport Protocol Secure). HTTPS sends information in encryption format to prevent hackers from stealing it. If you see your Browser open HTTPS website, you can be sure it is safe as it uses cryptographic encryption requires years to find a key to decipher the code.
The website owner has to install an SSL certificate (old certificate) or TLS-certificate to make HTTP protocol – HTTPS. The user should insert personal data only on protected HTTPS websites. Some website can use both HTTP and HTTPS, that leads for information threat for the user.
Another type of encryption is performed in HTTP/2, an intermediate solution between HTTP and HTTPS. It uses time-serving encryption.
The main difference in encryption systems is that for HTTPS websites, a Browser first check server certificate, if it is not existing there will be no secure connection; for HTTP/2, data transferring can start even via the unsafe HTTP protocol, the encryption starts on later stage after some communication between the server and the Browser.
Therefore, HTTP/2 is an intermediate solution for website administrators from HTTP and HTTPS as not providing complete protection, but the speed of data transferring is higher.
Google Chrome gives the user opportunity to use DNS-over-HTTPS protocol turning all user’s requests into HTTPS. The request is immediately encrypted with this add-on; the Internet provider cannot check user requests anymore. Firefox also gives the same add-on for its clients.
Storage of passwords in Browsers
Passwords are the weakest point of all users, it is not possible to remember all of them, and typically Browser stores them. There is some unique method to encrypt passwords – CryptProtectData and CredentialManager. All passwords are stored in a special determined place.
The most protected Browsers for passwords are Chromium for Linux/macOS and Firefox, as they have a master password for all password files. There are some additional programs to encrypt passwords additionally, but this considerably reduces the speed of work.
Encryption in proxies and VPN
In addition to encryption of data, some program methods (on top of the browsers) increase the confidentiality of the users as well. These methods are proxy servers, VPN, and Anti-detect Browsers.
Proxy servers work with different protocols: POP3 (standard for mail transferring), CGI (for anonymous entering on the Internet), HTTP or HTTPS (for web browsing by sending hypertext), SOCKS (for transmitting data), FTP (for data transferring from FTP servers to the user’s computer), DTN (for IPN network used by NASA). Upon your required functionality, you may choose the best proxy server, the most compared ones are http vs socks proxy.
In short words, HTTP proxy does not protect the user’s IP address; it will be not anonymous; SOCKS proxy is checking all traffic and does not send it all to the user, support TCP, and UDP protocols. Proxies provide an opportunity not to care about HTTP or HTTPS type of website, as a gate between the user and the resource server protection for security and anonymity.
All requests via proxy are encrypted, all harmful websites and advertisements are banned. Proxy servers protect the Internet traffic, but another solution – VPN – protects the whole traffic, tunneling all activity to the operating system.
VPN is a solution for a corporation to ensure that hackers catch traffic. VPN is also an intermediate device between the user and the Internet. This solution is much more expensive, and the traffic speed is considerably lower. VPN services encrypt all transferred data. The total protection can be set by a combination of VPN and Proxy, as each solution by itself can have a hole visible for the experienced hacker.
Proxy, VPN, and other cyber protection methods are developed to ensure confidentiality of the user and hide geolocation, control websites, and mask all activities on the Internet. Not all proxies equally fully encrypt the data; it is better to check the reviews before application. All confidential programs for free are an additional source of hacker attack, and in general, all information passing the third party can be stolen.
Cyber safety is a multi-stage process for the highest level of protection; it should start from VPN (the administrator can set the encryption rules here to determine the regulations for HTTP websites and HTTPS).
The next level is Antivirus and Firewall, the last one encryption on hardware. The encryption on hardware is not highlighted here but also an excellent way to defend the confidential data on mobile devices and notebooks.