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A digital certificate is a piece of software that allows any web browser accessing your site to authenticate that you are running a secure web site. Once the browser authenticates your web site's authenticity and web site security, it will show the user a locked padlock symbol or key on the browser, indicating that the site has been authenticated and is OK to use securely. You will need a digital certificate for your site if you plan to run a secure server. You can usually purchase a secure certificate through your web hosting provider, or from a web security specialist like Verisign.