Let's Encrypt has announced that it has issued one million certificates in just six months of operation.
First announced in 2014, Let's Encrypt issues free certificates for the Secure Sockets Layer/Transfer Layer Security protocols used by websites and other services to encrypt data in an easy to deploy way.
Josh Aas, executive director of the Internet Security Research Group, said that the growth since Let's Encrypt began issuing certificates in September has been huge and is exactly what the web needs.
"We’re growing at a current rate of more than 100,000 certificates per week and don’t see this slowing down anytime soon. This is a dramatic and very rapid change for the web," he wrote.
The group attributes its success to several key factors, including support from major domain providers and web hosting firms.
"Our rapid growth is due to strong demand for an easy-to-use, low-cost, widely trusted and truly global solution for certificate issuance and management," the organisation said.
"We also received a considerable boost from industry endorsement, with major hosting companies like OVH, Wordpress.com, Gandi, Dreamhost and Digital Ocean helping many sites move to HTTPS with Let's Encrypt."
As part of the development of the offering, Let's Encrypt also announced it is providing the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) with a piece of its non-core software.
Let's Encrypt will go forwards with a new name but the same priorities, the firm said.
"The rename is happening for reasons that go beyond the move to the EFF. One additional reason is that we want the client to be distributable and customisable without having to create a complex process for deciding whether customised variants are appropriate for use with Let's Encrypt trademarks," said Aas.
"Another reason is that we want it to be clear that the client can work with any ACME-enabled certificate authority in the future, not just Let's Encrypt. We expect the client to do well at the EFF and continue to be used by many people to get certificates from Let's Encrypt."
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