Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Professional Opinion Letters for EV SSL

What is EV SSL and why do I need it?

SSL is a combination of cryptographic protocols designed to provide high level of security over the Internet by encrypting data exchanged between the parties. When your customers see the padlock icon, "https" prefix and the green address bar in the URL field of their browsers, it shows the highest level of security and verification available on the Internet. Your customers are then more likely to share their personal information with your shopping cart. Less expensive standard SSL Certificates do not have the trusted green browser bar.

How EV appears in different browsers

How to obtain EV SSL?

You can obtain an Extended Validation Secure Sockets Layer Certificate (EV SSL) from the Certificate Authorities (CA) such as GoDaddy, GeoTrust, VeriSign and others. Prior to issuing an EV SSL to you, the CA will want to verify that you are a legitimate business. If they can’t easily verity that themselves (e.g., if you are a pretty new business), the CA will request you to verify your business information by obtaining a Professional Opinion Letter from a licensed attorney or a certified accountant.

The exact verification requirements are different from one CA to another but they generally need to verify that:

Your company is a properly registered business.
You have the necessary authority to act on behalf of that business.
Your DBA’s, if any, are valid.
Your business address and phone number are legitimate.
You have the rights to your domain name.
You have a valid bank account.
An attorney or CPA who signed your Opinion Letter has the required credentials. The CA normally follows up with an attorney/CPA by phone or by mailing a copy of the Opinion Letter back to the atty/CPA.

What documents do I need to provide to get an Opinion Letter?

I would normally need:
- Copies of the forms received from your CA (they normally either give you a list of requested info or a sample opinion letter). Examples: GoDaddyGeoTrust, Thawte, Symantec.

- Incorporation documents (Certificate of Incorporation, Certificate of Formation, etc.)

- Bylaws (for corporation), Operating Agreement (for LLC), or company resolution which shows what is your title within the company and proves you can act on its behalf.

- Lease or correspondence addressed to your physical business address. No P.O. boxes.

- Copy of a recent phone bill (if the phone number needs to be verified).

- If a WHOIS search for your domain name shows your company name and address, this is sufficient to verify your Domain. Otherwise, I’ll need a receipt for payment for your web domain.

- Statement from your business bank account.

Disadvantages of SSL

- They cost money. However, some hosts provide SSL certs for free.

- Slowed down performance because the information sent has to be encrypted by the server. However, the performance difference is negligible for websites that do not have a very large volume of traffic.

Overall, the advantages of SSL outweigh the drawbacks for websites that value users' trust.

How much will EV SSL Professional Opinion Letter cost me? 

For most businesses with a physical U.S. address, I can draft the Opinion Letter and respond to the CA’s follow-up inquiries for $99. I can usually get it done within three business days from receiving all the necessary documents and information from you.

I provide EV SSL Letters for Certificate Authorities such as:
Starfield Technologies
Network Solutions
Webfusion UK
... and others.

Read also:

Chrome Will Mark All Sites with Text Forms "Not Secure" in October
Google Will Reject Symantec's SSL Certificates

Как получить SSL-сертификат в США (How to Obtain SSL Certificate in USA)