Let’s Encrypt Status and Goals

Updated on Aug 9, 2023

For the longest time, HTTP was the global standard online. Let's Encrypt wants to change that. They not only want to make HTTPS the global standard, but they also want it to be free for everyone. According to Let's Encrypt themselves, it is high time for HTTPS to be the new default protocol on the Internet. Through the efforts of Let’s Encrypt and other companies striving for the same goal, almost all traffic online is done through a secure, HTTPS, connection. The usage of HTTPS has increased from 30-40% in 2015 to above 90% in 2023.

Equality online is another big motivation for Let's Encrypt. An SSL certificate is a ranking criterion for Google, and they want to provide such a certificate for the websites which cannot afford or do not have the ability to obtain one. As Let's Encrypt themselves have said, cost excludes people, and they want to change that. Secure Internet is for everyone, and they want to pioneer that sentiment.


Non-profit and Sponsors Make Let's Encrypt Free

Let's Encrypt is a non-profit organization that does not have to pay its employees. Furthermore, the majority of the operations are automated. That relieves a significant financial load. The required hardware is also mainly provided by the Linux Foundation's collaboration. Sponsorships and donations pay all other expenses.

Anyone can donate any amount to the organization through PayPal. For more considerable sums and organizations, a sponsorship scheme has been developed. The most expensive package costs $350,000, while smaller businesses could pay anywhere from $10,000 to $50,000, depending on the number of employees. Big companies such as Mozilla, Cisco, Chrome, and Facebook are also among the Let's Encrypt project supporters. For example, Automattic, the creator of WordPress, is a silver sponsor: it contributes $50,000 per year. Automattic uses Let's Encrypt to secure the websites hosted on WordPress.com.


A Much Larger Organizational Structure

Let's Encrypt itself is merely the certification service. The Let's Encrypt organization, on the other hand, is much more significant. Its parent organization is the Internet Security Research Group (ISRG). It is a non-profit organization based in San Francisco. Its board includes scientists, company representatives, and representatives of foundations and other non-profit organizations. Aside from ISRG there are two other vital institutions to mention as well.

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