Answered By: Ken Winter
Last Updated: Jan 26, 2018     Views: 30

At the end of January 2018 the library began migrating its Web presence from the HTTP to the HTTPS protocol.  The migration took effect on all the library's Web pages, including: 


What is HTTPS?
HTTPS is a more "secure" version of the HTTP protocol we use all the time. In the past year there has been a push for Web sites to encrypt all traffic on their sites with HTTPS, even sites (like your library) that don't deal with credit card numbers or other sensitive information. 

Why did we migrate?
In line with de facto standards for Internet security, our vendor Springshare implemented HTTPS for all systems and VDOT secured a new site certificate to me the library Web site (also powered by Springshare) HTTPS compliant too.  Since browsers like Chrome will increasingly display (sometimes alarming) security messages for pages that are served over HTTP, this move not only ensures security for site users, it also prevents any confusing error messages from being displayed to busy customers. 


VDOT Network Issues
While the library's HTTPS migration has been successful (for anyone accessing our pages from a computer off the VDOT network) we have learned that the McAfee Web Gateway software that monitors all VDOT network traffic has cached library pages as http and not https, causing error screens to appear when you try to access an any of the resources listed above.


  
Example 1: Chrome

Example of Chrome error message

 

Step two Chrome error screen capture

Example 2: Internet Explorer

 
The error screens displaying in Chrome and Internet Explorer are generic precautions to alert users of potential security concerns, and they advise that you do not proceed. However, in the case of library content those warnings are not valid.  We are told that by next week adjustments to McAfee will ensure those warning screens no longer. 

 

What To Do
You can still use all library resources from your VDOT computer.  Simply follow these steps (see arrows in the images above):


If you use Chrome:  Step 1: Select "Advanced" Step 2: Next select “Proceed to library.virginiadot.org (unsafe)”
Note: Chrome users will only need to follow these steps one time. 

If you use Internet Explorer: Select "Continue to this Website (not recommended)"
Note: Internet Explorer users will have to follow this step every time they access library pages, until we resolves the issue with VDOT IT.

 

We apologize for any inconvenience this issue has caused you and encourage you to come to us with your questions.

 

Ken Winter
VDOT Research Library
434-962-8979