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Anything You Should Know About SSL

 What is an SSL Proxy?

An SSL proxy is a type of proxy server that has an SSL certificate, allowing it to decrypt, inspect and re-encrypt HTTPS traffic between a client and server. This enables capabilities like filtering, caching, logging and content inspection of encrypted traffic.

● How does the SSL Proxy work?

When a client makes an HTTPS request, the SSL proxy acts as an intermediary - it terminates the TLS/SSL encryption from the client and establishes another encrypted session with the destination server. This allows the proxy to decrypt, examine and optionally modify traffic before forwarding the request. The proxy has its own certificate trusted by clients to decrypt traffic transparently without alerts.

● The types of SSL Proxies

○ Forward proxy: filters/caches outbound requests before exiting network. Used for filtering and parental controls.

○ Reverse proxy: handles inbound HTTPS traffic before distributing to internal servers. Used for load balancing and offloading computation/encryption.

○ Transparent proxy: intercepts and decrypts traffic without explicit client configuration. Provides invisible access control/filtering.

● The benefits of the SSL Proxy

○ Inspect encrypted traffic for threats, disable unsecured protocols and encrypt all outbound traffic for security.

○ Offload costly SSL operations to improve performance of backend servers.

○ Apply granular policies like parental controls, data loss prevention, malware scans etc.

○ Gather analytics and troubleshoot issues by monitoring decrypted traffic centrally.

 Transparent interception requires no software on endpoints/mobile devices.

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