Google, having received reports of websites becoming invisible after migrating from HTTP to HTTPS, are using their search console service to notify website owners of any issues associated with the shift from the old application protocol to the updated version. The technology giant, alerted of the issue via social media, is trying to resolve the problem by providing information to website owners who have experienced errors. John Mueller, a webmaster trends analyst who works for the company, identified bad or incomplete migrations as a likely cause of the problem.
Why did webmasters move their websites from HTTP to HTTPS?
The vulnerability of Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) to man-in-the-middle attacks, whereby an attacker hijacks the communication between two parties, led to the creation of a secure extension to protect website users from malicious activity. Increasing numbers of webmasters are moving their websites to HTTP Secure (HTTPS) for the added protection that it provides and Google, which operates the dominate search engine, has encouraged those who own or maintain websites to transition from the old protocol to the new.
How did the current problems arise and what is Google doing to set things right?
Webmasters, seeking to prevent Chrome from identifying their websites as non-secure and eager to maintain their search engine rankings, felt compelled to make the transition from HTTP to HTTPS but found that their websites had disappeared or seen a significant decrease in the visibility online after implementing the secure protocol. Google has used its search console, to inform website owners or webmasters of any errors that have occurred so that they can perform any necessary maintenance work to rectify the issue.
What is the underlying cause of the migration errors?
In many cases the move from HTTP to HTTPS, which encrypts sensitive data using Transport Layer Security (TLS), had been unsuccessful due to mistakes made by webmasters or developers during the transitional proceedings. The disappearance of certain webpages or even in some sever cases websites from the Google search engine results may have been due to the failure of webmasters or developers, inexperienced in changing application protocols, to set up the necessary redirects on their web-pages. Google, unaware of any migrations that it had not been informed of, was unable to index those web-pages in its search engine database.
How will Google help affected websites to reappear in the search engine results?
Google, eager to resolve the wave of problems that have arisen in the wake of its decision to persuade website owners to migrate from HTTP to HTTPS, are aiming to inform webmasters who have experienced issues since the transition from the original application protocol to the more secure model. Webmasters, informed by Google’s search console of what percentage of their website has successfully moved from HTTP to HTTPS, will be able to make any necessary alterations to ensure that the website is able to fully migrate from the older to the newer transfer protocol.