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HTTPS issues

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  • HTTPS issues

    My website has recently developed some issues with it's security setup.

    I am consistently getting security errors on several pages of my Alpha Server. However, when the pages do load, the security appears fine. It gives a solid lock.

    If I check the server rating I get an A.

    It acts as if sometimes it is simply not connecting properly with the servers in charge of checking the security in the first place.

    This is ONLY happening in Edge and Firefox. Chrome does not seem to be having an issue.

    During the summer our website is not even busy, so it's not too much traffic.

    Anyone else experiencing issues with HTTPS recently?

  • #2
    Re: HTTPS issues

    I would look into the issuer of the cert as a source of unreliability, who is the issuer of the cert? are you getting a specific error?
    NWCOPRO: Nuisance Wildlife Control Software My Application: "Without forgetting, we would have no memory at what was I saying?"


    • #3
      Re: HTTPS issues

      The site is hosted on ZebraHost. They setup the certificate and they have tested it for me today. The certificate is from RapidSSL RSA CA 2018.

      If you want to take a look yourself, it is

      Like I've said it doesn't ALWAYS give an error, but it's happening often enough to be concerning.


      • #4
        Re: HTTPS issues

        I was able to duplicate your error. What I think is happening is that when the URL is being called, it is sometimes calling a resource which is unsecured (such as an api or library call). You could always reissue the cert and hopefully remove that as a potential cause, then start analyzing your external calls. Sometimes you can have a local resource be called if an external resource isn't available, and sometimes the local resource url isn't fully qualified. Just a thought.


        • #5
          Re: HTTPS issues

          I thought of that, but ….

          If it was calling any unsecured resources, wouldn't that show up in the JavaScript console? I've looked and not seen anything like that.

          This is a site that has been up for about 8 years btw. This is an issue that has only recently been reported.

          I am not on the latest version of Alpha, but my version is not very old either.


          • #6
            Re: HTTPS issues

            I believe RapidSSL is owned by DigiCert now. I know they had some Root certificate updates. Is your cert using the right chain? Maybe it is hitting an old root cert. We had an issue with Citrix Receiver that they issued a patch for the root certs.
            Never take a ride to the edge of your mind unless you've got a ticket back - Jon Oliva - Savatage.


            • #7
              Re: HTTPS issues

              I will ask ZebraHost to do a complete reissue of the SSL and see if that fixes the issue.

              I'll let you know once that is completed.


              • #8
                Re: HTTPS issues

                How do you duplicate the error? I loaded your login page and the new user page many times using Firefox 68.0.2 and never got a security error. I cannot test with Edge because I am on Windows Server 2016.

                Is your client up to date on all Windows updates? TLS negotiation is dependent on the client and server having matching ciphers, so a missing update on the client could also lead to this type of problem.

                Lenny Forziati
                Vice President, Internet Products and Technical Services
                Alpha Software Corporation


                • #9
                  Re: HTTPS issues

                  It happens mostly (and frequently) in Edge. In Firefox it happens much less often and is actually much better since the reissue of the certificate. And yes, the client is up to date. And unfortunately, that doesn't matter, because the client for most of those pages is the general public.

                  I will try the ciphers tonight, just to be safe and report back tomorrow.


                  • #10
                    Re: HTTPS issues

                    So, I have reset the ciphers, reissued the certificate and still I am getting security errors on Edge.

                    I am getting security errors even on pages that have almost nothing on them. (Like the login page.)

                    And the errors are intermittent. I mean, if the site was truly insecure, shouldn't it report as insecure every time? But you can actually visit 3 or 4 pages sometimes before getting an error, then you can refresh and the error goes away.

                    This site has been running fine for YEARS and it's only developed this issue about a month ago, maybe a little longer - the summer is really slow for us. I have not updated or changed the Alpha server in that time - though I have made plenty of site improvements.

                    I am out of ideas here - Is no one else having this issue accessing their site with Edge?


                    • #11
                      Re: HTTPS issues

                      Your login page is trying to get a logo from a different web site:



                      • #12
                        Re: HTTPS issues

                        That is true, thank you. I fixed that now. Still getting a security error. I would think that a bad link would show no image (which was happening) or show an error image, but it shouldn't cause the site to register as insecure.

                        The Student Adventures .org site it was referencing is not having any security issues, and unfortunately, it has a spot which is referencing the same incorrect file. (Which I will get fixed next …)

                        Is there any easy way to find all bad links on a page? I usually just look in the console, but it wasn't showing that link I think because it was a background image in a CSS file. How did YOU find it?


                        • #13
                          Re: HTTPS issues

                          I just tried your login page in both Chrome and Edge. I don't have any security problems in either. Where are you seeing these problems?
                          Mike Brown - Contact Me
                          Programmatic Technologies, LLC
                          Independent Developer & Consultant


                          • #14
                            Re: HTTPS issues

                            In Edge, I turned on Developer Tools and went to the "Network" tab instead of the "Console" tab, before navigating to the web site.

                            I think browsers are going to become more and more picky about security and loading resources from different domains, especially when both domains specify "https". It is a lot of work for the browser and server to negotiate what security algorithm they are going to use for TLS or SSL. In a page that loads resources from multiple "https" sites, I don't know what the browsers are going to start doing when the sites have differing levels of TLS and SSL support, you know, all that Cipher list stuff.


                            • #15
                              Re: HTTPS issues

                              You might also check what is going on with "index.a5w".

                              It shows status code "302 / Found" in the "Network" tab in Dev Tools. I would expect it to not even show up in that tab, yet. Check the Alpha server, default page settings, maybe?