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Your users may experience the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID issue even if you have an SSL certificate installed on your website. The invalid certificate authority error, despite its scary name, is nothing to be concerned about.
Simply, your browser does not consider your certificate to be valid. It displays this error to keep you safe,’ so you’re aware that something isn’t quite right. However, as the website owner, you have a number of options for resolving the issue.
We’ll go over what the error message implies and how it appears in different browsers in this tutorial. Then, by going over all of the possible reasons for the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID problem, we’ll show you how to repair it.
Let’s get started!
What the NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID Error Is
This error occurs when your browser is unable to check the validity of your website’s SSL certificate, as the name implies. You shouldn’t get this issue if you haven’t set up a certificate or are using HTTP for your website, which isn’t recommended.
In general, the invalid certificate authority problem can be caused by one of three things. Let’s take a look at each of them separately:
The certificate has been obtained from an untrustworthy source. If browsers can’t validate the authority that issued your certificate, you’ll see an error message, just like with self-signed certificates.
The validity of your certificate has run out. As a safety precaution, SSL certificates expire. Although the duration of your certificate may vary, you will need to renew it or automate the renewal process at some point (some authorities and web hosts enable you to do this easily).
You’re using an SSL certificate that you’ve signed yourself. While using a self-signed certificate will save you money, your visitors may encounter the issue in question because browsers cannot validate its validity. We advise against using browser warnings because they can turn off a lot of users.
Remember that a user’s browser must validate and decrypt an SSL certificate every time they visit a website with one. They’ll get a warning if there are any issues during the process. Browsers will often actively restrict users from accessing a website in order to safeguard them. The “Your Connection Is Not Private” problem is a common symptom of this. As you may expect, if this happens on your own site, it’s a major issue.
Because of local configuration settings, you may occasionally receive the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID error. We’ll teach you how to troubleshoot this mistake in the sections ahead.
NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID Error Variations
The appearance of an error varies based on the browser you’re using. The varying problem messages that display might also be attributed to your operating system and certificate configuration.
With that in mind, let’s look at the most prevalent browser-specific versions of the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID problem.
When you encounter this problem with Chrome, the browser will immediately inform you that your connection is not secure. The browser is unable to encrypt your data because it does not recognise the authenticity of your certificate.
That is to say, if you go on, you are doing it at your own risk. This is how the error message appears:
The following are some of the most common codes for this problem in Chrome:
- NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID
- NET::ERR CERT COMMON NAME INVALID (When the certificate does not match the domain, this happens.)
- NET::ERR CERT WEAK SIGNATURE ALGORITHM
- NET::ERR CERTIFICATE TRANSPARENCY REQUIRED
- SSL CERTIFICATE ERROR NET::ERR CERT DATE INVALID
Chrome locates the cause of the issue within the certificate in every case. The browser allows you to go to the website if you want, but also advises you not to.
Firefox doesn’t spend any time in alerting you to the possibility of a security issue. Furthermore, this browser outperforms Chrome in terms of discussing plausible explanations and reassuring you not to be alarmed.
The principal error message is as follows:
Firefox encountered a problem and refused to visit domain.com. Either your computer clock is set to the wrong time or the website is misconfigured. The website’s certificate is most likely expired, preventing Firefox from safely connecting. Attackers may attempt to steal information such as passwords, emails, or credit card numbers if you visit this site.
However, that variant of the issue does not specify a specific code. In the majority of circumstances, the screen will also include one of the following codes:
If you observe an error code similar to one of the ones listed above, make a note of it. That is the browser’s way of informing you of the problem. A basic search for a certain problem number, in our experience, is frequently enough to help you find a speedy remedy.
You should recognize the Microsoft Edge problem notice below. It’s practically identical to Chrome’s message, down to the included code:
The error can also take on a variety of forms, such as the following:
- ERROR CODE: O
These error messages, like those in Chrome, provide some insight into what’s causing your NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID problem.
If you’re using Safari, you’ll see a variation of the ‘this connection is not private’ error, which indicates that the website’s certificate and encryption aren’t working. The message reads as follows:
An expired certificate is the cause of this error. As previously stated, one of the most prevalent causes of the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID error is expired certificates.
The error message in Opera is frequently something like this:
Due to a certificate issue, Opera is unable to validate the identity of the server “yoursite.com.” It’s possible that the server is attempting to deceive you. Do you want to go to the server now?
The following are some more variants of the error message. They’re all saying the same thing:
- NET ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID
- NET ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID
Don’t Ignore This Message on Other Websites
Finally, if you’re visiting an external website that you don’t control, don’t dismiss this error.
Because the site has been hacked, this warning may display from time to time. You are putting yourself at risk of identity theft if you submit any personal information (such as account names, passwords, or bank credentials).
If you receive a NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID warning and need to access this site, contact the webmasters first. It’s possible they’re completely unaware of what’s going on.
What Causes the NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID Error?
Let’s talk about what causes this issue now that we’ve got a good idea of what it looks like.
As we discussed a while ago, this mistake can arise for a variety of reasons. They can be classified into two categories:
Problems with your PC or your network
Problems with your SSL certificate or website
The first set of errors is caused by problems with your computer and/or internet connection, whereas the second section of errors is caused by problems with the website’s SSL certificate.
If the problem is with your personal browser or connection, try adjusting some settings or switching computers.
If the problem is with your SSL certificate, you’ll need to replace it or fix any faults with the present one if you run your own website.
While a certificate may be properly deployed, it is rendered meaningless if it cannot be accessible by a browser.
Quick and Simple Ways to Fix NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID Error
It’s time to figure out how to fix the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID error now that you know what it looks like in most major browsers. The most common causes were discussed previously. However, we also warned that in some circumstances, it could be triggered by your local setup.
As a result, there are numerous viable solutions to this problem. We’ll start with the three most common offenders: expired, self-signed, and ‘untrustworthy’ certificates, to make things simple.
Following that, we’ll look at broader options.
1) Get a Certificate from a Valid Authority
Nowadays, there’s no reason to utilise a self-signed certificate. If cost is the only consideration, Let’s Encrypt offers a free certificate. Every browser will accept the authenticity of your certificate because it is issued by an authorised authority:
If you’re a Kinsta user, you can get your free Let’s Encrypt certificate with only a few clicks from your MyKinsta dashboard:
You’ll need more than a free certificate for some websites, however. Free certificates must be renewed on a regular basis, which is a hassle. Premium certificates provide with extra features like data breach insurance, multi-domain encryption, and more.
Paying for a premium SSL certificate, especially for ecommerce sites, can be worthwhile. To avoid the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID issue, ensure sure the certificate you buy is from a valid authority.
2) Run an SSL Server Test
Something may have gone wrong during the setup process if you installed your SSL certificate just before the problem started displaying. If you install the certificate personally rather than through your web server, this is very likely to happen.
Using an SSL check tool, such as the one provided by Qualys SSL Labs, is the simplest approach to determine whether your certificate is properly deployed. This utility can be used without charge.
Simply input the domain where the error appears and press the Submit button:
Now wait a few minutes for the results to appear. Ideally, you should receive an A+ on all of your certificates, with perfect scores:
Scroll down to the list of certificates the tool displays if you don’t achieve a perfect score. A portion that tells you whether your certificate is trusted or not should be included. If the tool returns a bad result, you’ll need to replace it with a certificate from a reputable source.
3) Renew Your SSL Certificate
SSL certificates must be renewed on a regular basis for security reasons. The renewal procedure confirms your domain’s ‘identity,’ and certificates would lose some of their validity if it weren’t for it. Let’s Encrypt’s free certificates expire after 90 days, however premium certificates have a longer lifespan.
If your web host doesn’t manage it for you, you’ll have to manually renew your certificate when the period expires. In any case, when your certificate is ready to expire, Let’s Encrypt will notify you so you can renew it ahead of time. However, depending on your site server, you may not have access to renewal options through your control panel.
You can use the Certbot programme to install and renew SSL certificates via the command line if you have access to your server.
If the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID issue still exists after renewing your SSL certificate, try loading your website again.
4) Use Incognito Mode
Incognito or private mode is a quick approach to determine if your browser is having troubles with its cache or cookies.
Google Chrome. Go to File > New Incognito Window in Google Chrome to open an incognito window.
Firefox. To open an incognito window, go to File > New Private Window.
Safari. Go to File > New Private Window to open an incognito window.
Opera. To create a new private window, go to File > New Private Window.
You can also use the Windows keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Shift+N or the Mac keyboard shortcut +Shift+N.
Navigate to the webpage after opening a new private tab. You’ll get a glimpse of what a “completely new” visitor would view.
5) Try Using a Different Network
When utilising a public network, such as those found in coffee shops or tourist attractions, the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID issue may appear. These networks frequently do not route traffic securely, resulting in the mistake.
If you’re utilising a public network to access your computer, we recommend using your smartphone’s mobile data to visit your website. The purpose is to determine whether the original network is to blame for the problem.
It’s time to switch networks if the problem disappears when you utilise mobile data.
If you frequently use public Internet connection, signing up for a Virtual Private Network (VPN) is another approach to protect your privacy (VPN).
Even if you’re utilising an insecure connection, a reputable VPN provider will help protect your data. If you want to utilise a good VPN service, you’ll have to pay for it, but it’ll be well worth it if you’re constantly on the go.
6) Clear the Browser Cache and Cookies
It’s possible that your browser’s cache or cookies are loading an outdated version of the website. You can stop this from occuring by clearing your cache and cookies.
Google Chrome: Click the Chrome menu item in the top left corner. Then, from the drop-down menu, choose Clear Browsing Data.
A new tab will be opened.
After checking that Cookies and Cached images and files are selected, select Clear Data.
In the Preferences area of the menu, click on Privacy and Security, then scroll down to Cookies and Site Data.
Press the Clear Data button to clear the data.
Safari. From the menu, go to the Preferences area. Then select the Manage Website Data button under the Privacy menu. Finally, select Reset All from the drop-down menu.
Opera. To access your Clear browsing data options, use Ctrl+Shift+Del ([shift] + [cmd] + [del] on Mac). Make sure Cookies and site data, as well as Cached pictures and files, are chosen. Finally, push the Clear data button.
7) Disable Your VPN or Antivirus Software
If you’re already utilising a VPN and get the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID issue, it’s possible that the service is to blame.
Antivirus software is another major offender. After you’ve done everything else, we recommend temporarily shutting off your VPN and disabling your antivirus software.
Try browsing your site again and forcing a refresh to be sure it’s not loading from your browser’s cache.
Whether the problem has gone away, try re-enabling both services one by one to see if the invalid certificate notice reappears.
This will reveal who is at fault.
You can then try to update the software, contact the company’s support team for assistance, or hunt for an other option.
8) You Need to Update Your Time and Date Settings
The browser will typically alert you if the date or time on your device is incorrect. This erroneous data can be interpreted by the browser as an indication that the SSL certificate has expired.
Some browsers will additionally recognise any erroneous time/date data as a sign of a security vulnerability, and will issue a security warning as a result.
Make sure the time and date are set automatically to avoid problems like these.
On a Mac, go to System Preferences > Date & Time to change the date/time.
On a Windows PC, go to Settings > Select Time and Language to fix the problem.
9) Try From a Different Computer or Device
Do you have access to another computer? What about a smartphone, for example? Check the site on these devices to determine if the problem still exists.
If the problem occurs on different devices, the fault is most likely with the website. If the problem just affects you, it’s most likely due to a problem with your browser, device, or internet connection.
10) Your Browser Is Outdated and Needs to Be Updated
You may experience issues if you’re using an old or outdated version of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, or another browser.
Security vulnerabilities are closed, bugs are detected and resolved, and other concerns are handled as browsers are upgraded. As a result, if you use an earlier version of the browser, you may experience connection issues.
11) The Operating System Is Outdated
If your computer is running an old or severely outdated operating system, it’s likely that newer websites and browsers will cause problems.
The only thing you can do now is update your operating system. If you are unable to do so for some reason, consider using an internet virtual machine such as go4hosting or ClearVM.
12) Wipe Your Computer’s SSL State
Your computer saves copies of certificates from websites you visit on a temporary basis so it doesn’t have to go through the complete verification procedure every time you visit them.
Your SSL state can be thought of as a certificate-only cache. When you get incorrect certificate authority issues, you can delete your computer’s SSL state, much like your cache.
You may accomplish this in Windows by going to the Internet Options menu in your control panel and selecting the Content tab:
Close the window and try reloading your page by clicking the button labelled “Clear SSL status.”
If you’re running macOS and have previously accepted an untrusted certificate, you may need to remove the certificate exemption from your Mac Keychain.
To do so, go to Go > Utilities > Keychain Access: and then click the Finder icon.
Select Certificates from the Category drop-down menu. Any certificates that aren’t trusted should display a red ‘X’ next to their names. To remove them, go to the top of the screen and select Edit, then Delete.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Why does Chrome say certificate is invalid?
Chrome will display an error if the SSL certificate is not correctly installed. The website administrator must properly install the SSL certificate into the web server in order to resolve this problem.
- How do I access a website with invalid certificate?
It is dangerous to visit a website with expired certifications. To access it, you must first provide authorization to your computer, which will then run everything on the webpage automatically. If the page contains any potentially hazardous content, it will be presented alongside the rest of the data.
- What is the meaning of NET :: ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID?
Error NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID
That’s why you’re seeing an error message. When the certificate you’re using is expired or self-signed, you’ll see an SSL error. Installing an SSL certificate is required to provide security to your website visitors and to secure the data on your site.
Hopefully, following troubleshooting steps will assist you in resolving the NET::ERR CERT AUTHORITY INVALID Error.
Always choose a trusted Certificate Authority to get an SSL certificate.
The browser is unable to recognise the certificate issued by an untrustworthy certificate authority, which causes digital certificate difficulties.
If that doesn’t work, try each of the solutions in this article one at a time until you find one that does.
You’ll need an SSL certificate to protect your data, provide security to your users, and win their trust. It’s not a good idea to let such fears keep you from using an SSL. If you know how to diagnose SSL problems, you can fix them.