I don’t know about you, but I don’t spend much time thinking about that little green lock icon in my browser’s address bar. To me, it means my browser trusts the website I’m on and I can live without fearing that some internet baddie is going to steal my data. I leave it to much smarter people than myself to determine what defines that trustworthiness.

That little green lock means the site you are on is using SSL and that all data is encrypted before transfer. Encrypted data can only be read by someone with a specific key and, in the case of a website, this key is stored in something called an SSL Certificate. These certificates are the way browsers verify that the person you’re sending your data to is exactly who you expect it to be.

It might surprise you to learn that the encryption algorithm (called SHA-1) used to write many SSL certificates is no longer considered safe. SHA-1 has long been the encryption standard for SSL certificates, but the steady advances in computer power mean that it is no longer up to the challenge of keeping attackers at bay. Fortunately, a new standard (called SHA-2) is already available and compatible with all modern web browsers and operating systems.

Changes Coming to Harvest

In the coming weeks, Harvest is going to significantly improve our security by upgrading our SSL Certificate to use SHA-2. For most customers, this change will be completely transparent. That is, when Harvest switches certificates, you won’t even notice that it’s happened.

For a very small percentage of our customers, this change is going to render Harvest totally inaccessible. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to make this change in a way that works with very old software. For those customers, the only way to continue using Harvest will be to upgrade their browser or operating system.

What You Need to Do

Testing your browser for SHA-2 compatibility
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If the box above is green, you’re using a modern web browser and don’t need to make any changes.

If the box above is gray or red, you’ll need to upgrade your software. If you need help, just contact our Harvest Experts and they’ll get you upgrade advice based on your platform.

We know that there are many customers whose companies require them to use specific software, and we always take this into consideration when deprecating support for certain browsers. In this case, we believe that the security of your account takes priority, and are making changes to ensure that Harvest continues to provide the safest experience. Let us know if you have any questions!