Secure web page that contains insecure elements
Posted by on 16 July 2018 10:32 AM

When visitors to your web site request a page using a secure https:// connection, a broken padlock icon may appear in the web browser's location bar. Additionally, they may receive a warning message:

  • Mozilla Firefox displays:
    “The connection to this website is not fully secure because it contains unencrypted elements (such as images).”
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer displays:
    “Do you want to view only the webpage content that was delivered securely?
    This webpage contains content that will not be delivered using a secure HTTPS connection, which could compromise the security of the entire webpage.”
  • Google Chrome displays:
    “Your connection to is encrypted with 256-bit encryption. However, this page includes other resources which are not secure. These resources can be viewed by others while in transit, and can be modified by an attacker to change the look of the page.”


This problem occurs if a web page contains hyperlinks to insecure elements. For example, consider a web page that contains the following HTML snippet:

<a href="">View my picture</a>

In this HTML snippet, the hyperlink references a non-secure http:// resource (a .jpg file). If a user requests this page using an https:// connection, the page itself is encrypted, but the hyperlinked image file is not. As a result, the page contains secure and insecure content, and the browser displays a warning message to the user.

This problem can occur with any type of hyperlinked resource file - a JavaScript library, a CSS file, and so on.

To resolve this problem, use either of the following methods.

You can use relative links in hyperlink URLs to prevent browsers from displaying warning messages about insecure content. For example, we could rewrite the above HTML snippet as follows:

<a href="/images/picture.jpg">My picture</a>

Because the image file is referenced by a relative link instead of the explicitly insecure http:// URL as above, the browser does not warn users about mixed secure and insecure content.

You may have HTML code that references a resource on another domain (such as a JavaScript library or CSS file). In this scenario, you clearly cannot use a relative link to the external resource. Instead, you can modify the hyperlink in your HTML code to use https:// in the URL instead of http://. For example, if you want to use a lib.js file hosted on the domain in your own web pages, you could use the following code:

<script type="text/javascript" src="" />

Note that this only works if the remote site also supports SSL connections.

Method 2: Redirect all requests to SSL connections

An alternative method is to redirect all user requests to SSL connections. Using this method, even if a user specifies a non-secure URL like, they are automatically redirected to

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