Let’s Encrypt to Offer Free Wildcard Certificates in 2018

- July 6, 2017

SSL certificate authority Let’s Encrypt announced it will begin offering wildcard certificates starting in January 2018. In an announcement issued today the company says its hope is that wildcard certs will further progress the Internet toward 100 percent HTTPS encryption.

Wildcard certificates are those that can be used to secure multiple subdomains belonging to the same root domain. It makes applying a certificate to a site much easier and cheaper for domain admins.

The company notes it is currently serving more than 47 million domains. But the news my be a bit troubling for admins fighting off phishing attacks, as many phishing campaigns have been observed using legitimate certs from Let’s Encrypt. The free and easy model the company provides also allows attackers an easy way to make a phishing site appear legitimate.

The announcement says the new wildcard certificates will be offered through a new API, which is also launching in January 2018.