Before we get to the implementation part of SSL certificates onto a mail server in Web Hosting Manager (WHM), we need to get a few basics out of the way. Mainly, we are going to deal with few seemingly confusing terms such as CA, SSL and WHM in this entire guide. So what exactly are these?
Certification Authority (CA)
Certification Authority is governing body that issues digital certificates for a variety of security and authenticity purposes that ensures safe application and usability of online modules, sites, and various other tractions.
Secure Sockets Layer also known as SSL, is a form a of encryption technology that provides secured access to a website. The most common way to identify whether a website is SSL certified is by noticing its “http://”. If the website is SSL certified, then the website can be accessed through “https://” instead of the primitive and potentially insecure “http://”.
WebHost Manager (WHM)
WebHost Manager is an advanced administrative application created by cPanel that helps in administering direct control of your dedicated or Virtual Private Server, commonly known as VPS.
So, we know that having a SSL certified website provides authentication of the application and a secured navigation experience for the users and the developers maintaining the back-end alike.
When you set up a website or web hosting service for your clients, they would want complete authenticity of the product that they are paying for. One of the key necessities of clients who have a functioning website is an email server. Emails, as we all know, is the digital form of basic communication that spans worldwide and is used regularly. They contain tons of private and confidential data that require secured transmission. For this purpose, a secured mail server needs to be implemented possessing all the required SSL certificates on your WHM. Let’s take a look at how it can be done in few simple steps.
With the log-in credentials of cPanel, you need to first log in to the WHM. Once logged in, you will need to navigate to ‘Manage Service SSL Certificates’ which you can find on the left hand side of the page, under the ‘Service Configuration’ tab.
On the bottom of the page, you’ll find a ‘Browse Certificates’ tab. In order to install a new certificate, you need to click on the tab, which will create a pop-up screen, asking you to select the SSL of the existing domain.
After selecting the appropriate certificate, you’ll be prompted with 4 checkboxes to choose from. Over here, you need to just select “Dovecot Mail Server” and leave all the checkboxes as it is.
Once you have ticked the ‘Dovecot Mail Server’ check box, you can scroll down and click on the ‘Install’ button. It usually takes around 10-15 minutes to completely install the certificate on the server.
When the installation completes, you can verify the install notes and certificate details by choosing ‘Certificate Details’ in the ‘Dovecot mail Server’ section. You’ll notice the CA signed SSL certificate is registered and displayed in the notes.
And there you have it. 5 simple steps and your certificates are integrated in your Google Mail server.
SSL certificates are digital security stamps for the websites. A website that has all the required certificates installed in their in the mail servers, tend to generate more trust amongst the users.
Usually, the common user using the internet, is not aware of how digital security works. Hence, they are much more alert and sceptical, especially during financial transactions or even personal information disclosures on websites.
These certificates are represented through icons such as a ‘lock’, or digital signatures of the security certificate, or the aforementioned “https://” prefix.