As thee internet has evolved into a ubiquitous tool of commerce the need for secure transactions has taken on extreme importance. SSL is such a security measure taken by website owners. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layers which is a fancty way of saying that the website or ecommerce platform is protected and certified as safe to transact commerce.
It accomplishes this by encrypting the information that passes over the internet through the “cloud”. In effect all a hacker would see if they intercepted your transaction (and they can) would be a meaningless set of alpha numeric information. Only the recipient has the ability to decode the encryption and receive the actual information.
Users should only transact business on websites that have such layers of protection.
SSl is sometimes also referred to as TLS or Transport Layer Security. This is simply an alternative name for the same process.
WordPress is compatible with SSL in its basic structure. SSL is also used for email and other secure transactions. If a site is not protected using SSL than most modern web browsers will alert a user of that problem