SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) and SSH (Secure Shell) are both cryptographic protocols designed to secure communication over networks. However, they serve different purposes and operate at different levels of the network stack.

In this blog, we’ll take you through the meaning and differences between the two.

What is SSL?

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is a security protocol used to establish a secure and encrypted connection between a client and a server over the internet or any other network. It is widely used to secure web traffic between a web browser and a web server and is implemented in popular web browsers such as Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Microsoft Edge.

SSL uses a combination of public key and symmetric key encryption to establish a secure connection between two devices. Public key encryption is used to authenticate the identity of the server and to negotiate a shared encryption key, while symmetric key encryption is used to encrypt and decrypt the data being transferred from the client to the server or vice versa.

The use of SSL helps to ensure that any data transmitted between the user’s browser and the website is encrypted and secure from eavesdropping or tampering. This makes SSL an important tool for protecting sensitive information such as passwords, credit card numbers, and other personal data transmitted over the internet.

What is SSH?

SSH’s full form is Secure Shell. It is a protocol that allows you to connect securely to a remote computer or server over the internet or any other network. It provides a way to remotely log in to a system and execute commands as if you were physically present at the machine.

SSH uses encryption to protect the data that is transmitted between the client and server so that the information cannot be intercepted or read by someone who is not authorized. It also uses authentication to ensure that the client and server are who they say they are and to prevent unauthorized access to the system.

SSH is commonly used by system administrators, developers, and other technical users to manage remote systems, transfer files securely, and perform other tasks that require a secure connection. It is an important tool for anyone who needs to access and work with remote systems securely and efficiently.

SSL Vs. SSH: Differences between SSL and SSH

Primarily used to secure web traffic between a client and server Used for secure remote access to a server or computer
Operates at the network stack’s transport layer (Layer 4). Operates at the network stack’s application layer (Layer 7).
Uses public-key encryption to establish a secure session between the client and the server Uses symmetric-key encryption for data confidentiality.
Typically uses port 443 for HTTPS traffic. Typically uses port 22 for secure shell access.
Implemented in web browsers and web servers. Implemented in terminal emulators and SSH clients and servers.


Understanding the differences between SSL and SSH can help you choose the right protocol for your specific security needs, whether you’re securing web traffic or remote access to a server.

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Hope this blog was insightful for you.


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