Security on The Times website has been boosted in a move that will prevent online “eavesdropping”.
On Wednesday the website, which publishes content from both the Times and Sunday Times, moved from an HTTP to an HTTPS (HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure) connection, meaning content is now encrypted.
A Times spokesperson confirmed the move, saying it was “best practice”.
In a personal blog post on Medium, Times newsroom developer Basile Simon said the changeover was the result of “many months of hard work by multiple teams” in the technology department.
He said: “As a reader of The Times and The Sunday Times, why does this [changeover] matter?
“Your traffic and web browsing history is constantly logged by internet service providers (ISPs) under the provisions of the Investigatory Powers Act 2016.
“Even if you don’t care about intelligence agencies looking at your history, this data is valuable and a premium product… HTTPs is a first step in protecting readers against this.”
He said the change “prevents someone tampering with our journalism before [readers] see it” and will “protect [readers] against [online] eavesdropping” with encryption for specific articles and keywords.
He said: “Malware and code that could harm your computer, as well as unwanted ads, can be injected by many parties when you look at an unsecured website…
“Ad spaces can be targeted by hackers to exploit their legitimate placement on trusted websites to inject code directly inside your browser.
“Not any more on HTTPS.
“With a complex website like ours, containing articles, interactive content and ads from many different systems, this simple switch has taken several months of hard work. But we’re proud to be able to make the web safer for our readers.”
He added also hinted at plans to create new ways for sources to securely contact the Times and Sunday Times, “putting privacy and security at the heart of our journalism”.