You are surfing the internet, browsing through various websites of your interests. You are having a good day till now, and then, the browser suddenly shows the “Your connection is not private” error. 

You get an alert that your online privacy, such as personal information, payment methods, and others, is at risk. If you see this error for the first time, you may panic. For others, it may be annoying that your website browsing chain is disturbed. 

The good news is that you don’t need professional help to sort this problem. You can solve this error in a few minutes if you know what you are doing. 

Here, we will discuss 18 different ways on how to fix the “Your Connection is Not Private” error. First, let’s begin with the introduction segment.

What Does the “Your Connection is Not Private” Error Mean?

It is a privacy error that you get when you are trying to access a site that is not secure. 

When you visit any site, your web browser sends a request to the server that hosts that website. Your browser validates the certificate that is installed on the website. It checks whether the security is up to the current privacy standards or not. Other things are the TLS handshake, narrowing the certificate against the certificate authority, and certificate decryption. 

If your browser finds the certificate invalid, it automatically prevents you from reaching that website. 

Such a feature of web browsers exists to protect user data from hackers. So, if the certificate is not set up properly, the browser displays the “your connection is not private” error.

Such certificates are known as identity certificates or public key infrastructure. They are proof that those websites are who they claim to be. Digital certificates protect your personal information, payment information, and passwords. When you receive the “your connection is not private” error, it means there is an error in the website’s SSL certificate

What is an SSL error? 

An SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate is serving sites over the HTTPS connections. HTTPS is a security gate that authorizes connections and protects data. Thus, an SSL error is a connection error when your browser finds no secure way to establish a connection to the site that you have requested.

Here are a few common scenarios when an SSL error might occur: 

  • The SSL certificate is expired or missing. 
  • Your web browser is not up-to-date.
  • When your antivirus settings or the date and time settings are off
  • There is an issue with the server that hosts the website. 

Variations of the “Your Connection is Not Private” error

You may receive the “your connection is not private” error in multiple ways depending on the browser. Here are some of the variations of this error on popular browsers: 

#In Google Chrome 

Google Chrome will take you to a new page with a red exclamation mark with the message “Your connection is not private.” It also warns you with a line that reads, “Attackers might be trying to steal your information from domain.com (for example, passwords, messages, or credit cards).”

connection error in Google Chrome

You will also see an error code message. Here are some of the common error code messages you might see on Google Chrome: 

ERR_CERT_SYMANTEC_LEGACY
NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID
NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID (this error occurs when the site’s SSL certificate does not match the domain)
NET::ERR_CERT_WEAK_SIGNATURE_ALGORITHM
NTE::ERR_CERTIFICATE_TRANSPARENCY_REQUIRED
NET::ERR_CERT_DATE_INVALID
SSL certificate error
ERR_SSL_VERSION_OR_CIPHER_MISMATCH

#In Mozilla Firefox

In Mozilla Firefox, the privacy error message is displayed as “Your connection is not secure” instead of “Your connection is not private.” However, the meaning is the same. You also can see the option to go back or to the advanced settings menu. 

connection error in Mozilla Firefox

You also receive an error code just like you would in Chrome. Here are some of the error codes you may see on Mozilla Firefox: 


MOZILLA_PKIX_ERROR_ADDITIONAL_POLICY_CONSTRAINT_FAILED

SEC_ERROR_EXPIRED_ISSUER_CERTIFICATE

SEC_ERROR_EXPIRED_CERTIFICATE

SEC_ERROR_UNKNOWN_ISSUER

SEC_ERROR_OCSP_INVALID_SIGNING_CERT 

MOZILLA_PKIX_ERROR_MITM_DETECTED

ERROR_SELF_SIGNED_CERT

SSL_ERROR_BAD_CERT_DOMAIN

#In Microsoft Edge 

You will see the “Your connection isn’t private” message in Microsoft Edge. Along with it, you will also see a warning that reads,” Attackers might be trying to steal your information from domain.com (for example, passwords, messages, or credit cards).”

connection error in Microsoft Edge

You also receive an error code. Some of the codes you may see in Microsoft Edge are:

NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID (this error occurs when the site’s certificate does not match the domain)
Error Code: 0
DLG_FLAGS_INVALID_CA
DLG_FLAGS_SEC_CERT_CN_INVALID

#In Safari 

If you use Safari, you will receive the connection privacy error as “Your connection is not private.” You also get a warning that “This website may be impersonating “***.com” to steal your personal or financial information. You should go back to the previous page.”

How to Fix it?

Bluntly staring at the message might be your first reaction to the connection privacy error. The message might even scare you. From our experience, this error has two origins: 

  • The client-side issue where there is a problem with your web browser or your computer OS
  • A problem with the certificate where it may have expired, or has a wrong domain, or the organization does not trust it. 

You can try to solve this connection privacy error as follows: 

1. Reload Your Browser. 

Reloading the browser is a common and an obvious step that most users follow whenever they see an issue with the browser. However, this is the first step that you should take whenever you encounter a connection privacy error. 

There may be a problem with your browser at the moment, or the site owner is reissuing the SSL certificate. So, close your browser and open it back. Try connecting to the page you were trying to reach. 

2. Double-Check the Website’s URL.

Mistyping the URL is a common mistake. You may be trying to access a site repeatedly and getting an error only to know later that the URL was incorrect this whole time. So, if reloading the browser a few times does not solve the issue, double-check the URL of the site you are trying to reach.

3. Public Internet Connection 

If you are connected to public Wi-Fi networks, seeing the “Your connection is not private” error is quite common. The reason may be that you have not configured the connection properly. This usually happens when you need to sign in to the portal and accept the terms. Here is what you can do: 

  • Connect to the public Wi-Fi. 
  • Browse to any non-HTTPS website.
  • A sign-in page should open up. Accept the terms and log in. This step usually consists of a few checkboxes. It should not take you long. 
  • After signing in, it should fix the connection privacy error. 

Note: Whenever using a public network, make sure to use a VPN (Virtual Proxy Network.) Using a VPN protects your identity by hiding your traffic while exchanging data between a distant server.

4. Try Incognito Mode.

The following method to try is using the incognito mode to try and open the website. If the site you tried reaching before does not run on incognito mode, too, there is a security issue with the website. Maybe its SSL certificate expired or did not have one at all. 

However, if the website loads in incognito mode, the problem is with your browser’s cache files. We recommend clearing the browser cache and trying to re-access the page. 

5. Clear Browser Cache.

Clearing browser cache is always a good idea to make sure nothing is wrong with your browser. Sometimes, the cache files on your browser may be outdated compared to the website’s new update. In other cases, the browser cache may load on the resources and cause your browser to load the page very slowly. 

In such a scenario, clearing your website browser is your best option. Click here to learn how to remove the browser cache in detail.

6. Check Your Computer’s Date and Time. 

Another reason that you see the connection privacy error is because of the wrong date and time set on your computer. Your browser relies on them to verify the validation of the SSL certificate. The date and time of your computer may not sync appropriately in some cases. This mostly happens in a newly purchased computer. 

Adjust your computer’s date and time, and then try accessing the page. 

Here is how you can adjust the date and time: 

#In Windows 

  • Right-click on your taskbar’s bottom-right tray showing your computer’s current date and time. 
  • Select the “Adjust date/time” option. 
Adjust date and time option in Windows
  • Select the “Set time automatically” option. The date and time should be correct now. Double-check in the bottom right-hand task tray to make sure. 
set the date and time automatically in Windows

#In Mac

  • Go to the Apple menu and click on the “System Preferences.”
  • Click the Date and Time icon. If there is a padlock icon at the bottom of the window, click it and enter your PC administrator username and password.
  • Select the “Set date & time automatically” option. 

After correcting your computer’s date and time, go back to the page you tried to access. See if it runs now. 

7. Check Your Antivirus Settings.

Your antivirus protects your computer from malicious user attacks and DDoS(Distributed Denial-of-service) attacks. If there is a faulty configuration of your antivirus, it views requests from CDN (Content Delivery Network) as an attack on the server. It then blocks any request and displays the error. 

Disable the antivirus software temporarily or turn off the “SSL Scan” feature. Now, try accessing the page. 

8. Clear Your Computer’s SSL State.

Clearing the SSL state is often overlooked. But sometimes, this may help solve the connection privacy error. Here is how you can remove the SSL state on your computer: 

  • Search for “Internet Options” or “Internet properties” in the start menu.
  • Open it. 
  • Click on the “Content” tab.
  • Click on the “Clear SSL state.”
  • Click OK.
  • Restart Chrome.
Clearing SSL state

9. Change DNS Servers. 

The next method on the line is changing your DNS servers. We have noticed the “Your Connection is not private” error showing up when using Cloudflare DNS, i.e., 1.1.1.1 and 1.0.0.1, or Google Public DNS, i.e., 8.8.4.4 and 8.8.8.8. You can remove this DNS back to your ISP (Internet Service Provider) DNS servers. This can solve the connection privacy error sometimes. 

To do this, follow these steps: 

  • Go to the “Network Connection” settings on your computer. 
  • Right-click on the Wi-Fi connection that you are connected to and go to the “Properties” option.
Wi-Fi network connection properties
  • Scroll and click the “Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)” from the list and click on the “Properties” below.
IP version properties
  • Make sure to select the “Obtain DNS server address automatically” option.
enable the obtain DNS automatically

10. See if the SSL Certificate has expired. 

Expiration of the SSL certificate without the site owner’s knowledge happens a lot more than you might anticipate. Here are some reasons why it happens: 

  • The site owner has not enabled the auto-renew feature with the SSL certificate provider.
  • The owner has enabled the auto-renew feature, but the payment fails. It can be because the owner forgot to update the payment method. 
  • The owner uses the free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate that expires every 90 days. They don’t have a new script to renew the certificate, or they forget the script.

If the connection privacy error is due to the expired SSL certificate, you will get the following error code: 

NET::ERR_CERT_DATE_INVALID

To check, if the site’s SSL certificate expiration date, follow the steps below: 

  • Click on the vertical three dots in Chrome at the top-right corner. 
  • Select the “More tools” option from the list and click on the “Developer tools.”
  • The easier way is to hit the “Ctrl + Shift + I” button to open the developer tools directly.
  • Go to the “Security” and click on the “View certificate” option.
Viewing SSL certificate in chrome
  • A dialogue box appears showing the validity period of the certificate. 
SSL certificate validity

Another quick way to access the certificate is by clicking the padlock icon in front of the site’s URL and clicking the “Certificate (Valid)” option.

quick way to view SSL certificate validity

11. Check the Subject Alternative Domain.

Each certificate has a subject alternative domain. It includes all the variations of the domain name for which the certificate is valid.

For example, search engines treat https://www.domain.com and https://domain.com as two separate entities. Thus, if you are a site owner, make sure to register all the domain name variations on your certificate.

If you are an internet surfer and are receiving the connection privacy error followed by the code SSL_ERROR_BAD_CERT_DOMAIN, it means the domain name variation is not registered in the site’s certificate. 

Here is how you can check the registered domain name variations: 

  • Go to the “View certificate” option, as mentioned earlier.
  • Click on the “Detail” tab.
  • Scroll down and select the “Subject Alternative Name” option from the list. 
  • It shows all the DNS names registered in that certificate.
Check the Subject Alternative Domain.

12. See if the SSL Certificate is SHA-1. 

SHA-1 is a once commonly-used cryptographic hash algorithm on the web. This algorithm showed some weaknesses and is no longer supported on any browser nowadays. However, if a site is still using a certificate with the SHA-1 algorithm, you might get the “Your connection is not private” error. 

Nowadays, most certificates use the SHA-256 hash algorithms. You can check the site’s SHA algorithm as follows: 

  • Go to the “View certificate” option as above. 
  • Go to the “Details” tab. 
  • Scroll down and click on the “Signature hash algorithm” option. 
  • You can see the SHA algorithm version here. 
checking the SHA version of a website

13. See if Symantec has issued the certificate.

In January 2017, news became public about some practices of Symantec on certificate issues. They didn’t comply with the CA/browser forum baseline, although being aware of this. As a result, browsers decided not to support SSL certificates issued by Symantec. 

Thus, if a website is still using the SSL certificate issued by Symantec, the “Your connection is not private” error may appear with the code NET::ERR_CERT_SYMANTEC_LEGACY.

Symantec legacy error

14. Update Your Computer OS.

Computers with outdated operating systems fail to cope with new technologies. In some cases, the specific components in the up-to-date SSL certificate stop working on older OS. In fact, Google Chrome stopped supporting Windows XP in 2015. If you are using a computer with older OS versions, you may receive a connection privacy error when surfing a site. 

Thus, we always recommend upgrading your OS to newer versions, if possible such as Windows 10 or the latest Mac OS X version.

15. Restart Your Computer.

We understand that this is the most annoying step in any issue with the computer. But, we had to mention it. You may have a lot of background work going on or multiple tabs opened up on your browser. However, rebooting your device and even the router helps clear temporary caches. This step might work. Give it a try. 

16. Manually Proceed.

We don’t recommend this step due to the risks. However, if you do want to visit the site under any measure, you can follow this step: 

You’ll receive a link at the bottom of the error message that reads ‘Proceed to domain.com (unsafe).’ Click on it to proceed to the site you are trying to reach.

manually proceeding to the website

If you want to get through with this step, note that you are putting your login credentials, personal information, and payment details at risk. Remember that you are receiving the error message in the first place because your browser deems it unsafe. So, if you want to bypass the warning, so be it. However, we don’t recommend putting your digital information at risk.

17. Disable Chrome from Checking SSL Certificates 

You can also disable Google Chrome from checking the website’s SSL certificates. However, this step is only for testing and development purposes. Don’t go through this way if you don’t know what you are doing. 

Allowing Invalid SSL Certificates from Localhost

If you are testing a site locally, you can use the Chrome flag to allow insecure connections from the localhost. Here is how: 

  • Browse to “chrome://flags/” and search for “insecure.”
  • Select the “Enabled” option for the option “Allowed invalid certificates for resources loaded from localhost.”
allowing invalid certificates from localhost
  • Restart your browser and run the site.

Disable Chrome from Checking all SSL Certificates

You can also disable Chrome from checking SSL certificates. Here is how: 

  • Right-click on the chrome launcher and go to “Properties.”
  • Go to the “Shortcut” tab and add the “–ignore-certificate-errors” code in the “Target” section.
disabling chrome from checking SSL certificates

Google Chrome now disables the checking of SSL certificates. Thus, you won’t receive the “Your connection is not private” error. 

Note: Only execute this step if you are sure what you are doing.

18. Take Help.

You have tried every step we mentioned above, but still, the connection privacy error does not resolve. As a last resort, we recommend taking the developer’s support if you own a WordPress site and are facing a privacy error on it. 

Google Chrome Help Forums may also be helpful. There are surely people who have faced this problem and will be glad to help you out. 

Summary

Surfing the internet is never fun with errors popping up, especially with a warning about privacy. The “Your connection is not private” error is among those errors which may leave you idle and not knowing what to do. 

The “Your connection is not private” error is a result of some misconfiguration on your computer or the SSL certificate of the website. We have walked you through 18 different ways you can try to fix it. Hopefully, one of these steps helped you out. 

You may also check out: 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *