What You Need to Know About TLS 1.3

Website security and speed serve as critical components for organizations operating in the digital realm.

For almost two decades, the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) protocol, and its successor, Transport Layer Security (TLS), have been essential in this capacity.

TLS serves as the successor to Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). Although you may see references to both, it is essentially the same technology that has evolved over time. Its job is to provide users secure communication between servers and Web browsers.

Symmetric cryptography secures this connection through encrypting the transmitted data. For each connection, unique shared secret keys are created during the TLS “handshake” session.

What to Expect from TLS 1.3
As of March 21, 2018, TLS 1.3 has arrived as the new standard in encryption protocol for websites. It’s been eight years since TLS has been updated, and the new 1.3 version offers enhanced security and performance. Here’s how the widespread adoption of TLS 1.3 could bolster your Web presence…

Faster Speed
Compared to TLS 1.2, TLS 1.3 offers improved speed. The faster speed for encrypted connections stems from features such as Zero Round Trip Time (0-RTT) and TLS false start.

In the past, TLS 1.2 required two round-trips to finish a TLS handshake. In contrast, TLS 1.3 only needs to complete one round-trip. This reduces encryption latency by one-half. With this feature, users will be able to browse websites faster and with greater security.

Enhanced Security
Compared to TLS 1.2, which webmasters and system administrators struggled to consistently configure properly and thus made connections to websites vulnerable to attacks such as the RC4 and BEAST exploits, TLS 1.3 has removed the deprecated features that caused these issues, including SHA-1, RC4, DES and AES-CBC, among others.

With this streamlined approach, Web developers and administrators are now less susceptible to misconfiguring protocols, thus making websites safer for users in terms of confidentiality and integrity as well as reducing the risk of cyberattacks.

Understanding Deprecation of TLS 1.0 and 1.1
TLS 1.0 and 1.1 have been and continue to be vulnerable to cyber attacks. TLS 1.0 was first published in 1999 as RFC 2246, while TLS 1.1 was published in 2006 as RFC 4346.

These previous versions are no longer considered safe for data transmission compared to the encryption security provided by TLS 1.3 and even TLS 1.2.

The Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council’s (PCI) final deadline for TLS 1.0 was in March 2018. Moreover, the PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) mandates that users disable the utilization of all SSL/TLS 1.0 applications by no later than June 30, 2018. Although PCI will still accept TLS 1.1, users are strongly encouraged to adopt the utilization of newer versions of TLS protocol.

As a leading Certificate Authority, SSL.com ensures its customers are compliant and prepared for any major updates to SSL/TLS. You can rest assured that you will never have to worry about these concerns because our forward-thinking experts are always a step ahead. Learn more about SSL.com’s enterprise-level solutions and how it can protect your business and its reputation.