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HAVE YOU NOTICED WHAT'S NEW?

The latest version of Herts Dive Club’s website has now gone live after several months of preparation and work. It represents a huge leap in terms of functionality, security and performance so here is what’s new…

SSL SECURITY

Without a doubt the biggest change to the website in terms of time spent and investment by the club is the transfer of the website to a Secure server. Secure Socket Layer (SSL) servers have become more and more the mainstay of online security and before HDC could implement any other changes it had to make sure that it was in compliance with this protocol.

What is SSL?

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the web server and browsers remain private and integral. SSL is an industry standard and is used by millions of websites in the protection of their online transactions with their customers.

To be able to create an SSL connection a web server requires an SSL Certificate. When you choose to activate SSL on your web server you will be prompted to complete a number of questions about the identity of your website and your company. Your web server then creates two cryptographic keys – a Private Key and a Public Key.

The Public Key does not need to be secret and is placed into a Certificate Signing Request (CSR) – a data file also containing your details. You should then submit the CSR. During the SSL Certificate application process, the Certification Authority will validate your details and issue an SSL Certificate containing your details and allowing you to use SSL. Your web server will match your issued SSL Certificate to your Private Key. Your web server will then be able to establish an encrypted link between the website and your customer’s web browser.

secure server imageThe complexities of the SSL protocol remain invisible to your customers. Instead their browsers provide them with a key indicator to let them know they are currently protected by an SSL encrypted session – the padlock icon (normally in the address bar of the browser), displays your SSL Certificate and the details about it when it is clicked. All SSL Certificates are issued to either companies or legally accountable individuals.

Typically an SSL Certificate will contain your domain name, your company name, your address, your city, your state and your country. It will also contain the expiration date of the Certificate and details of the Certification Authority responsible for the issuance of the Certificate. When a browser connects to a secure site it will retrieve the site’s SSL Certificate and check that it has not expired, it has been issued by a Certification Authority the browser trusts, and that it is being used by the website for which it has been issued. If it fails on any one of these checks the browser will display a warning to the end user letting them know that the site is not secured by SSL.

Typically an SSL Certificate will contain your domain name, your company name, your address, your city, your state and your country. It will also contain the expiration date of the Certificate and details of the Certification Authority responsible for the issuance of the Certificate. When a browser connects to a secure site it will retrieve the site’s SSL Certificate and check that it has not expired, it has been issued by a Certification Authority the browser trusts, and that it is being used by the website for which it has been issued. If it fails on any one of these checks the browser will display a warning to the end user letting them know that the site is not secured by SSL.

HDC MEMBER'S ZONE

The new security features have allowed us to expand the members zone to give members more benefits from their membership as well as streamlining the membership administration.

The new member’s zone has been built from the ground up to offer more functionality and features.

Members Profile Page

The Profile pages forms the core of the new members zone. Each profile page represents a single member on our site and can be reached through multiple ways, most common being from the members directory. Profile pages are styled to fit the theme and look good with any amount of user data.  A horizontal menu below the header area allows easy navigation among different areas of the profile. A vertical menu in ‘About’ sections allows navigating different profile sections. Some areas of profile are only accessible to the specified HDC Dive Team like emergency contact details and medical statements etc. For any member, this is the most personalized area of the site and allows easy access to different activities available to them. Here are the important features of user profiles:

  • Cover Image
  • User Avatar (profile Image)
  • Username
  • User Group
  • Group Badge
  • Profile Navigation Menu
  • About area with sections as vertical menu
  • Blogs area
  • Friends area
  • Messaging area
  • Notifications area
  • Group Wall (coming soon)
  • Group Gallery (coming soon)

Each profile has multiple editing and managing options accessible to members. These include:

  • Upload, change and remove the cover image, with cropping options
  • Upload, change and remove the profile image (avatar), with cropping options
  • Change Password
  • Edit profile fields in a separate editing area
  • Managing friends (accept or cancel requests, remove from friends list etc.)
  • Managing Notifications
  • Managing conversations
profile grid Click Image for Gallery

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