GW Drupal Update: All webpages will be served over HTTPS

February 26, 2016

What's changing?

Starting on Thursday, March 3, 2016 at 7:00p.m., all GW Drupal pages will be served using the HTTPS (secure) version of the URL, rather than HTTP. Any existing HTTP links to your site will automatically redirect to the HTTPS version of the URL.

For example: http://example.gwu.edu/about-us will redirect to https://example.gwu.edu/about-us

Do I need to do anything?

No. You do not need to make any changes to your content in advance of this change. All existing links will continue to function.

How can I see what my pages look like for logged-out users?

Until now, it's been possible to toggle between the HTTP and HTTPS version of the URL to display the logged-out vs. logged-in view of a page. Now that all webpages will be HTTPS, when you're logged into GW Drupal you'll need to use a second browser (or your current browser's "Incognito" or "Private" mode) to view pages as though you are a logged out user.

Why is GW making this change?

There are several factors driving this change, including:

  • Page display: GW Drupal webpages referenced over HTTPS have not always displayed properly. This change will ensure that all pages display as intended regardless of the user's browser or device.
  • Security: Moving to HTTPS-only keeps GW on pace with an industry that is moving to HTTPS as the standard for delivering web content in a secure manner. Many major websites now exclusively serve pages over HTTPS.
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Search engines such as Google are now giving a higher rank to pages served over HTTPS. This change will help improve the SEO of GW webpages as a whole.

Questions?

For questions or to report any problems, visit Online Strategy Office Hours or contact the Division of Information Technology at 202-994-GWIT (4948), ithelp@gwu.edu or on their website. Technology assistance is available through the IT Support Center 24 hours a day. Additionally, walk-up technology support is available at Tech Commons located in the Lower Level of Gelman Library. For self-help resources and answers to frequently asked questions, please visit the GWiz knowledge base.