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Mark Shuttleworth established Thawte, an SSL provider based in South Africa, while working from his parents’ garage back in 1995. The company is renowned for pioneering the provision of online security certificates outside the USA. It is currently one of the largest public certificate authorities on the web and a globally recognized provider of SSL certificates. To help you make a more informed decision, listed below is a detailed review highlighting all you need to know about Thawte SSL certificate solutions.

Features

thawte-logoThawte SSL options vary in price depending on the type of digital certificate and its validity period. While many standard offerings cut across all plans, some features are exclusive to specific types of SSL certificates. For instance, every Thawte SSL certificate features a 21-day free trial, a secure https domain, over 99% browser compatibility, and the company’s site seal logo. Additionally, every subscriber automatically receives expiry date reminders to enable timely renewals.

Types of Certificates

Thawte provides three major SSL certificate types, all of which should be renewed by default on an annual basis. However, digital certificates with validity periods of 2-3 years are also available for users intending to utilize Thawte SSL solutions for extended periods. Below is a breakdown of what each Thawte SSL certificate offers:

Domain level validation

The 123 SSL certificate is the only domain level validation SSL certificate offered by Thawte. As an entry-level plan, it provides encryption for one domain name plus a golden padlock in the address bar to let users know the connection is secure. Since the domain level validation SSL is typically issued minutes after application, it has the fastest authentication wait times.

Organization level validation

SSL BitWhen it comes to organization level validation SSL certificates, Thawte offers two options:

  • SSL web server certificates that secure only one domain, meaning you will have to buy SAN certificate for multi-domain encryption at an extra cost.
  • Wildcard SSL certificate that provides the option to encrypt multiple sub-domains using one certificate at no additional charge.

Since it takes some time to authenticate full organization level validation, Thawte only issues this category’s SSL certificates within one business day.

Extended validation

While they are the only SSL certificates that display full identification credentials and a secure site name with the green address bar, it usually takes 1-3 days to acquire this type of web server SSL certificates from Thawte. Although the standard EV SSL certificate is only capable of securing one domain, you can encrypt multiple domains by accruing a SAN digital certificate, albeit at an additional cost.

Extras

Although Thawte doesn’t provide many extra features, they have some unique offers such as free re-issuing of SSL certificates, over 500K NetSure warranty, an installation checker, and the Certificate Center Account portal that allows users to use Thawte’s intuitive control panel to manage each of their products from one place.

Safety and Security

With each digital certificate encrypting your website with 256-bit keys, Thawte SSL certificates provide ultimate security. Thawte even backs each of their plans with warranties worth thousands as a show of absolute confidence.

Help and Support

support-2As a subsidiary of Symantec, Thawte provides world class help and support with customer support offices in several cities worldwide. As a client, you can not only access multilingual support but also get in touch via phone, live chat, or email. Additionally, the knowledge center is an excellent source of installation instructions, help articles, troubleshooting guides, video tutorials, and answered FAQs, particularly for do-it-yourself users. Because the knowledge center features categorized links pointing to help pages and a search box, finding help documentation is easy.

Pros

  • Best SSL certificates providing up to 256-bit encryption
  • 99% browser compatibility
  • Free 21-day trial period
  • Wide variety of digital certificates
  • NetSure warranty for all SSL plans
  • Convenient online application process
  • SLL products compatible with internationalized domain names

Cons

  • Requires an additional SAN to encrypt more than one domain

Summary

thawtesecure270x130Although being able to secure several domains with one certificate would be great, the multiple SSL products offered by Thawte’s are quite comprehensive, reliable, and include a variety of digital certificates to cater for every budget and requirement when it comes to web security.