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97 Percent Of YouTube Traffic Is Encrypted


In this day and age, security and privacy are extremely important. Without sounding paranoid or delusional, it seems like nearly every third party has some dastardly plan to use your personal data for no good: Hackers and identity thieves collect personal data to use for their own gain. The government collects personal data for storage and review - and who knows what else. Companies and third parties collect the data and history to sell to affiliates and create products or services.

The two best ways to protect yourself from prying eyes, at least while browsing the web, are to use a proxy or IP masking tool and to encrypt any and all data being transmitted.

Google's Big Revelation

It's a good thing then that Google and YouTube recently announced they've been using encryption for nearly 97% of their traffic for the past two years. Apparently, that number isn't 100% because not all devices support a modern HTTPS connection.

Remember, there are several types of video encryption. One form of encryption even masks or hides certain videos from individuals. This form of encryption could be used to offer exclusive content only to paid or premium members, as opposed to everyone.

In comparison, YouTube uses active encryption through a secure HTTPS connection. Through that connection, all data from YouTube's web users is being encrypted, whether it's being sent or received. The service has been rolled out over the past couple years, and this is the first time we're officially hearing about it.

This move is important not just for the future of YouTube, but also for the future of the internet as a whole.

What Implications Does This Have for the Future of the Web?

It's no secret cybersecurity is more important than ever. Over 169 million personal records were exposed or stolen in 2015, across a total of 781 publicly announced breaches.

We could keep going with some rather shocking stats, but there's no point. Several high-profile hacks and security breaches have been covered to death already. It's good to see a company like Google taking measures to protect its service and users.

What does this mean for the future?

While it may never be possible to create a system that prevents exposure and breaches entirely, software engineers can certainly make things more difficult for prying eyes. YouTube's encryption process is just one way to prevent data from being stolen. We can expect to see many more services shift to a system like this.

Because of YouTube's massive scale, Google must employ several advanced forms of technology, particularly when it comes to cloud computing. It's done something similar with Gmail, phasing out all insecure connections, which it eventually plans to do with YouTube.

Encryption involves masking or locking content behind a key. The only way to decrypt and access said data is with an authorized encryption key. More advanced forms of encryption use complex keys and systems to mask the data. It's not unhackable technology per se, but it is extremely difficult to gain access to encrypted data.

The Future of Encryption

There are technologies out there that make it virtually impossible to gain access to secure data, and that's exactly the direction the industry is heading. It may be some time before such technology is widely adopted, however. For now, we'll need to remain satisfied with the fact that major providers like Google and YouTube are working toward protecting our personal data and browsing history.


About the Author

Kayla Matthews is a tech-loving blogger who writes and edits Follow her on Twitter to read all of her latest posts! 

Image by veeterzy

Published Monday, August 08, 2016 8:17 AM by David Marshall
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