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How to Tackle Wrong or Invalid SSL Certificate Error

Here’s How to Solve Invalid SSL Certificate Error That Carries the Potential to Harm Your Brand Reputation

Having a website is quite the norm these days. People are heavily dependent on technology, and even for the smallest things, the website comes handy. However, cyber-attacks are increasing day-by-day, and among them, more than 40% of small businesses are targeted. Even people are also aware of the increased dangers of cyber-attacks, and they also actively take precautions to not to be a victim.

Furthermore, browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox have even started giving visible clues and warning messages to users. For instance, whenever someone tries visiting any website which is not secure and among them, one also includes a warning for a website without SSL/TLS certificate.

err cert authority invalid
Yes, having an SSL/TLS certificate is of utmost importance, and users are also very well aware of it. If your website doesn’t have an SSL, then you’re heading towards serious trouble as your website will start popping warnings like “Not Secure.” Another important thing is that if you’ve got an SSL installed, but it’s not correct, it also shows warnings and error messages. Though you might know it’s not serious, it can negatively impact users as they might not know about it, and they end up thinking the site is not safe. In such scenarios, users may go away from your site, which can negatively impact your site reputation and ultimately lead to a loss in revenue.

And in this piece of article, we’re going to discuss one such SSL error: Invalid SSL Certificate Error.

What’s Invalid SSL Certificate or Certificate is Not Valid Error?

Like other errors, Invalid SSL Certificate Error is one of those seen on the website, which has SSL installed on it. It’s the error message that’ll be seen if the browser fails to recognize the installed SSL certificate, a certificate authority is not valid or not recognized by the browser. It generally means that installed SSL is not trustworthy, and there’s potential danger on the site due to this scenario.

In other words, web browsers fail to recognize the installed SSL. They don’t have the name enlisted of the certificate authority in their built-in lists of trusted CAs as they have of popular ones such as Comodo, Sectigo, or DigiCert.

Other Commonly Seen Reasons for This Invalid SSL Certificate Error to Occur

Some other common reasons why this Invalid SSL Certificate error shows up are:

  • If users access the mismatch domain name in the address bar, then the browser will show the error of invalid SSL certificate. As a result of this user must have to access the right domain name or URL, which exactly enlisted on the certificate, to resolve the error.
  • If the user has signed their certificate by an unknown trusted source or self-signed certificate, the browser will show an invalid certificate error. To avoid this situation, the user must have a valid certificate authority SSL certificate.
  • In case the certificate has expired and is no longer valid, the browser will show an invalid certificate. To avoid this situation, users must have set alerts for the expiry of the certificate and get it renewed in time.
  • In an exceptional case, if your website has an incorrect format of SSL certificate, then it’s called an invalid certificate by browsers.
  • If by mistake, the purchased SSL/TLS certificate gets misconfigured while installing, there’s no way to get to the correct HTTPS version. And, whenever someone tries accessing the website, this Invalid SSL Certificate error will show up.
  • An invalid SSL Certificate can occur when you try installing an SSL/TLS certificate on the server, but the certificate details are not correct.
  • The installed certificate has been purchased illegally, or it’s revoked.
  • There’s a broken certificate chain of trust. For instance,
  • The root/intermediate certificate is expired.
  • The root CA is not verified.
  • The chain consists of a self-signed certificate.
  • The chain doesn’t end with a trusted root certificate.
  • The chain doesn’t end with a trusted root certificate.
  • Antivirus or Firewall might be interrupting the SSL connection, and you may require disabling options like “encrypted/SSL scanning or checking.
  • Rare, but the site might be using only SHA-1 encryption.
  • Not able to verify the signature of the installed SSL/TLS certificate.
  • The structure of the SSL/TLS certificate is broken.

Here’s How Security Implications Can Occur When Invalid SSL Certificate Error Occurs

Some of the serious security implications can occur due to Invalid SSL Certificate error, and it’s recommended not to overlook such things. For instance,

  • Due to such error, the communication channel between the server and the client doesn’t stay encrypted. All the data transfers in cleartext, which can result in a serious security breach.
  • An attacker can sniff sensitive data like user login details and session ID for any session to use it further to impersonate themselves as legit users or to exploit the weakness in session management.
  • The site might get treated like a malicious website set up by cyber crooks, which can negatively impact reputation.

How to Fix SSL/TLS Certificate Error – Invalid SSL Certificate Error

Go through the below solutions to solve Invalid SSL Certificate Error:

  • First, verify whether the Firewall or Antivirus program is interrupting SSL connection. If it’s blocking, then you can face this error message. To solve it, unblock the website from Anti-virus definition or Firewall.
  • Clear cache files, internet browsing history, and cookies.
  • Verify whether the system’s date is correct, whether it matches the current time zone. If not, reset to the correct one.
  • Verify whether SSL is configured and installed correctly through free tools like SSL Checker. If it’s not, then consider referring SSL installation guides.

Disabling Invalid SSL Certificate Error on Browser

Every browser shows many types of error messages with different names though they have the same meaning. And, they also have different ways to turn off such warnings. Thus, you should be aware of the right steps to turn off SSL error messages.

Though, turning off an SSL warning or error message is not a wise decision, as it brings nothing good unless you’re sure about what you’re up to. The main reason behind avoiding turning off these errors and warnings is that once you do so, you’ll no longer receive error or warnings even if you visit any malicious website that carries serious potentials to do damage. And instead, you’ll be directed to that unsafe website without being warned at all.

However, if you’re still sure about it and you understand that you can turn on such warnings later on without forgetting, then below are the steps to disable Invalid SSL Certificate Error message in Google Chrome & Mozilla Firefox.

Here’s How to Disable Invalid SSL Certificate Error in Google Chrome

For disabling invalid SSL error, first, open Google Chrome and type chrome://flags into the address bar and hit the Enter button.

Once the flags screen open, look for #allow-insecure-localhost. The “Allow invalid certificates for resources loaded from localhost” option will come up. All you need to do is Enable that option and restart your Google Chrome browser.

Here’s How to Disable Invalid SSL Certificate Error in Mozilla Firefox

  • First, open Mozilla Firefox advanced configuration option by typing about:config into the URL bar and hit the Enter button.
  • The warning screen of Proceed with Caution will show up like:
firefox proceed with caution
  • Click, Accept the Risk and Continue.
  • Once you proceed to the next screen, look for browser.ssl_override_behavior, and once you get that, change its value from default 2 to 1.
firefox advanced preferences
Now, restart the browser and visit the site that’s showing you this invalid SSL certificate message.

Wrapping Up

These days cyber threats are on the rise, and many steps are taken by popular browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox, and one such is SSL related warnings. And, in return, it has benefited even those users who weren’t aware of SSL. So, it’s but obvious that users also look through visible clues, and instead, if they find any warning or error message, they’ll be less likely to visit that site or else trust it. If the website is new and not popular yet, it’s certain to lose potential customers forever.

Furthermore, many times users fail to get SSL/TLS certificate from the trusted certificate authority, which results in this Invalid SSL Certificate error. And to avoid such error as a website owner, one of the simplest solutions is always to get an SSL certificate from known Certificate Authorities like Sectigo or DigiCert as they’re in the trusted list of all the major web browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.

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