Different Colors in the IE9 Address Bar, Here's What They Mean
Article by George Norman
On 12 May 2011
The final version of Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) has been out there since the 14th of March and numerous users downloaded the browser as soon as it was released (2.3 million downloads were recorded on the first day after IE9 was rolled out). On the 28th of March Microsoft started to roll out IE9 via Windows Update to IE9 Beta and IE9 RC users; and on the 18th of April Microsoft started to roll out IE9 to all other Windows users. It’s safe to say then that a lot of people got the browser.

If you are on IE9 and you were wondering why the address bar changes color when performing an online transaction, and if you were wondering what those colors mean, then here’s an explanation.

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Different colors are used to show the state of the certificate used to encrypt the webpage. Here’s what the colors mean:

Green – the certificate uses extended validation; certification authority has confirmed the website is owned or operated by a business that is legally organized under the jurisdiction shown in the certificate. Communication between your browser and the website is encrypted.
White – the certificate has normal validation. Communication between your browser and the website is encrypted
Yellow – cannot verify the authenticity of the certificate or certification authority that issued it. There may be a problem with the certification authority's website.
Red – out of date, invalid or certificate with an error.

By using an encrypted connection you are protecting your privacy and ensuring that people with malicious intent do not snoop on your traffic. The data you send to a particular website and the data sent back from the website to your browser is encrypted and protected; others cannot see what you send and receive. Microsoft emphasized the fact that even if you use an encrypted connection, your privacy may still be compromised if the website you’re visiting is not trustworthy or if there’s a problem with how the website uses and distributes the info you provide.

Tags: Microsoft, IE9, Internet Explorer 9
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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Different Colors in the IE9 Address Bar, Here's What They Mean
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