If you see the “your connection is not private” error appears on your screen, don’t panic. This issue is common for most internet users. Luckily, fixing it is a piece of cake. Let us cover why this issue happens and how to repair it, shall we?
Why does your connection is not private error appear?
This error message doesn’t have to be bad! It means Google Chrome prevents you from visiting an unreliable website. This error appears when your browser notices a problem while creating an SSL connection, or can’t verify the SSL certificate.
What is SSL anyway?
SSL (Secure Socket Layer) has been developed to help keep data safe. SSL encryption prevents attackers from stealing users’ private data: name, address, or credit card number. If you do any transactions via your website, we recommend you to set up SSL on your website.
When you visit a website, Google Chrome sends a request to the server asking for the site. If the requested website uses HTTPS, your browser will automatically scan whether there is an SSL certificate or not. Then, the certificate is checked to make sure it fits the privacy standard.
Google Chrome will immediately prevent you from entering the website if the SSL certificate isn’t valid. Instead of showing a plain blank page, Google Chrome will display the error message “your connection is not private” on your screen.
Besides the absence of an SSL certificate, there are several more reasons why this problem occurs.
SSL certificate is expired
If you are the website’s owner and this problem happens to you, even though you are sure you set up the SSL certificate, you should check the active period of your SSL certificate.
This certificate doesn’t last forever. An SSL certificate is usually active for one year. After that, you need to renew your subscription.
SSL certificate only belongs to the domain, not the subdomain
Sometimes there’s no problem on the website’s main page, but the error appears when you go to a subdomain. This is because the SSL certificate only belongs to the domain, not for its subdomain.
Check the SSL you purchased. The cheapest options are sometimes valid only for a single domain.
Untrusted organizations issue SSL certificate
It is possible to have an SSL certificate without purchasing one. Issuing and setting up an SSL certificate for your site is fairly easy.
However, most browsers only allow SSL certificates from trusted organizations to assure its security. So, if your browsers find out the SSL certificate isn’t issued by a trusted organization, this error might appear.
How to fix your connection is not private error in Chrome browser
Although an SSL certificate is the main issue causing this error, it might be a client-side issue. The good news is, that it’s an easy fix. We’ve collected 8 simple ways to fix the “your connection is not private” error in Google Chrome.
1. Reload the page
Once you see the error message on your screen, the first and easiest thing you can do is reloading your page. This might seem silly but works most of the time. Chances are the SSL certificate is being reissued, or your browser fails to send the request to the server.
2. Make sure you don’t use public wifi
This may sound funny. Yet, using a public network like cafe or airport wifi is the most common reason why users get this error.
Public networks usually run over HTTP. Therefore, if you perform transactions through public wifi, the information you input will not be encrypted. It will be shown as text and everyone using the same wifi network can steal your personal data. Your browser will automatically show this error to warn you.
3. Clean your browser from cache, cookies, and browser’s history
From time to time, your browser cache and cookie section might get overloaded and might cause the error.
To clear browser cache from Google Chrome, you can follow the step below
- Find and click the three dots in the top right of Google Chrome window
- Click More Tools
- Click Clear Browsing Data from the submenu
- Check boxes near Browsing history and Cached image and files
- Hit Clear data button to finish the step.
4. Try Incognito Mode
Your browser’s cache, cookies, and history may be important. Don’t worry, you don’t need to delete anything yet. First, you can check if the cache is causing the issue by trying incognito mode.
By using incognito mode, you use a browser without a cache, cookies, or browser history. To access incognito mode, you can click the three dots in the top right of Google Chrome window. Choose New Incognito Window. Next, try to visit the website using incognito mode. If a similar problem appears, it might not be because of your website’s cache and cookies.
5. Check your computer’s date and time
This one may seem a bit odd. The error might appear because your date and time aren’t set properly. Browsers count on your computer’s date and time to check the SSL certificate’s validity.
Usually, the date and time are set in the future when your certificate is no longer valid. Or, it is set to the past when you haven’t set up the SSL certificate yet. Making sure the date and time are set correctly might fix the issue.
6. Check antivirus software or internet security program
Some antivirus software and internet security programs scan for HTTPS. If this feature is on, it will block unusual SSL certificates or connections. To fix this, you need to turn off the “SSL scanning” feature.
In case you can’t find where the setting is, you can try to disable the antivirus and reopen the website. If the error no longer appears, you might want to switch your antivirus software.
7. Manually proceed with an unsafe connection (not safe)
The error can’t prevent you from visiting the website. You can still go to the website at your own risk. Proceed manually by clicking Advanced-> Proceed to domain.com link at the bottom of the error screen.
8. Ignore the SSL certificate error from the Google Chrome Shortcut (not safe)
Manually proceeding with an unsafe connection fixes the problem temporarily. If you don’t want this warning error bothering you, ignore the SSL certificate error from Google Chrome.
Remember that this method will only put the warning in silent mode. The errors might still be there and prevent you from accessing unsafe websites.
To do this method, you can follow the steps below
- Right-click Google Chrome shortcut on your desktop
- Click Properties
- In the Target field, add –ignore-certificate-errors
- Click OK
- If there is an error code NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID appears, bypass it by clicking Proceed
- Revisit the website and now the error will disappear.
The “your connection is not private” error in your browser shouldn’t cause panic. Lucky for you, fixing it is easy. We’ve provided eight simple methods you can try after reading this tutorial. If anyone has other methods to fix this issue, kindly share your experience in the comment section below. See you in the next article.