How to Fix the NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID Error: 14 Methods

how-to-fix-the-net_err_cert_authority_invalid-error

Are you seeing the error message “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” when attempting to reach a website? This warning signifies that your browser doesn’t trust the SSL certificate presented, an issue that can significantly impact both website visitors and owners.

Today, we’ll walk you through understanding this error, its common causes and impacts, as well as simple yet effective solutions to resolve it. Ready for some peace of mind? Let’s dive in!

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • The “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error occurs when a browser does not trust the SSL certificate presented by a website, indicating potential security risks and data privacy concerns.
  • Common causes of this error include the use of self-signed SSL certificates, expired certificates, certificates from non-trusted sources, certificate validation errors, and decryption errors.
  • This error can have significant impacts on both website visitors and owners, including security concerns, loss of trust and credibility, as well as a decrease in website traffic and conversions.
  • Diagnosing and troubleshooting solutions for this error include checking browser error messages and SSL certificate details, using online tools for certificate validation, clearing browser cache and cookies regularly, and updating browser software and system date/time settings.

Understanding the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” Error on Google Chrome

The error occurs when a browser does not recognize the authority validating the SSL certificate installed on a website.

Definition and explanation of the error

NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID“, also known as NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID, is a security warning error message that appears in web browsers when there’s an issue verifying the SSL certificate of a website.

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificates are utilized to secure the communication between your browser and server, ensuring data privacy. This error tends to occur if you’re using a self-signed certificate or one from a non-trusted source – highlighting causes found among our three primary ones.

Also, expired certificates can trigger this error message. Regardless of the cause, encountering this could mean potential dangers for website visitors since it might be an indication that their information isn’t fully protected during transmission.

Various browsers express this warning differently; Google Chrome warns with “Your connection is not private,” emphasizing the risk involved for users. It’s worth noting different variations exist like ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID and ERR_CERT_WEAK_SIGNATURE_ALGORITHM which all point towards issues with your SSL certificate authority validity or its installation process.

Common causes of the error

Here’s a list of some common triggers for this issue:

  1. Use of Self-signed SSL Certificates: When a website uses an SSL certificate that is self-signed, browsers may not recognize its validity
  2. Expired Certificates: Another common cause of this error is when the SSL certificate on your website has expired. Browsers check the validity period of each certificate and will reject any that are out-of-date.
  3. Certificates from Non-trusted Sources: If your SSL certificate comes from a source not trusted by the browser, you can expect to encounter this error message.
  4. Certificate Validation Error: Errors during the validation process can trigger this problem as well. The browser needs to confirm the certificate’s authenticity, and any issues during this step can result in access being blocked.
  5. Decryption Error: A decryption error might occur during data transfer if there’s a problem with the SSL encryption key

Impact of the Error on Website Visitors and Owners

The “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error can have significant implications for both website visitors and owners. It raises security concerns, jeopardizes trust and credibility, and can lead to a decrease in website traffic and conversions.

Security concerns and risks associated with the error

The primary concern revolves around security risks that arise when a browser doesn’t recognize an SSL certificate’s validity.

This issue signifies potential vulnerabilities, opening doors to unauthorized accessdata breaches, or even cyberattacks. An untrusted SSL certificate warning in browsers like Google Chrome can cause users to question their information’s safety on your site, which could lead to a significant drop in traffic and conversions for website owners.

Hence, these SSL certification errors aren’t just technical glitches but entail serious security threats warranting immediate attention and resolution.

Potential loss of trust and credibility

When users encounter this error, they are alerted that the website’s SSL certificate cannot be trusted, raising concerns about the security of their information.

In turn, this may cause visitors to question the reliability and authenticity of the website, resulting in a potential decrease in trust and credibility for the owner. This loss of trust can have serious consequences for businesses, as it may lead to fewer conversions and decreased website traffic.

Therefore, website owners must address this error promptly by ensuring their SSL certificates are validly issued by trusted authorities. Regular monitoring and updating of these certificates will help maintain visitor confidence and safeguard against any potential loss of trust or credibility.

Decrease in website traffic and conversions

When visitors encounter this error, it raises security concerns and makes them hesitant to proceed further.

As a result, they may choose to leave your site, leading to a decrease in overall traffic. Additionally, the error can undermine trust and credibility in your brand, reducing the chances of visitors converting into customers or taking desired actions on your site.

It is crucial to address this issue promptly by ensuring that your SSL certificates are up to date and obtained from reputable authorities. By fixing the error and providing a secure browsing experience, you can regain the trust of your audience and improve website performance.

14 Methods to Fix NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID error

To diagnose and troubleshoot the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error, start by checking browser error messages and SSL certificate details.

1. Checking browser error messages and SSL certificate details

To fix the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error, first try:

  • When encountering the NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID error, it’s important to check the error messages displayed by your browser and examine the SSL certificate details.
  • Browser error messages may vary depending on the browser being used, but they generally indicate that there is an issue with the website’s security certificate.
  • Look out for messages such as “Your connection is not private” or “This Connection Is Not Private.”
  • To find more specific information about the SSL certificate, click on the lock icon in the address bar.
  • This will provide details about the certificate’s validity and whether it is issued by a trusted authority.
  • Pay attention to any warnings or errors related to the certificate’s expiration date, issuer, or chain of trust.
  • Additionally, ensure that the domain name on the SSL certificate matches the website domain you are trying to access.

2. Using online tools for certificate validation

Another important step to fix the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error is to validate the certificate.

Certificate validation plays a crucial role in ensuring the trustworthiness and security of SSL certificates.

These tools can verify the authenticity and validity of SSL certificates, checking for any potential issues such as expiration or revocation. Running an SSL server test can provide valuable insights into the certificate’s configuration and identify any compatibility issues that may be causing the error.

By using these online tools, website owners can take proactive measures to fix certificate-related problems and ensure a secure browsing experience for their visitors.

3. Clearing browser cache and cookies

The “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error can sometimes occur when outdated or corrupted data is stored in your browser, causing conflicts with SSL certificate validation. To troubleshoot this issue, follow these steps:

  1. Open your browser’s settings or preferences.
  2. Navigate to the privacy or history section.
  3. Look for options related to clearing cache and cookies.
  4. Select the appropriate checkboxes to clear both cache and cookies.
  5. Choose the time range you want to clear (e.g., last hour, last day, etc.).
  6. Click on the “Clear” or “Delete” button to proceed with clearing the cache and cookies.
  • Google Chrome: Go to Settings > Privacy and security > Clear browsing data.
  • Safari: Go to Preferences > Privacy > Manage Website Data.
  • Microsoft Edge: Go to Settings > Privacy, search, and services > Clear browsing data.
  • Mozilla Firefox: Go to Options > Privacy & Security > Cookies and Site Data.

4. Updating browser software and system date/time settings

Updating your browser software and system date/time settings is crucial in diagnosing and troubleshooting the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error. Here are some important points to keep in mind:

  • Keep your browser software up to date: Regularly update your web browser to the latest version available. This ensures that you have the most recent security patches and bug fixes, which can help resolve certificate validation issues.
  • Check your system date and time: Incorrect system date and time settings can sometimes cause SSL certificate errors. Make sure that your computer’s clock is set correctly, including the time zone and daylight saving settings.
  • Sync with an Internet time server: To ensure accurate timekeeping, synchronize your system clock with a trusted Internet time server. This will help prevent any discrepancies that could lead to SSL certificate validation problems.
  • Clear browser cache and cookies: Outdated or corrupted cache and cookies can interfere with SSL certificate validation. Clearing your browser’s cache and cookies can help resolve this issue and refresh the certificate data stored locally on your device.
  • Disable proxy servers or VPNs: Proxy servers or virtual private networks (VPNs) can sometimes interfere with SSL certificate verification. Temporarily disabling them can help identify if they are causing the error.

5. Installing trusted SSL certificates correctly

Here are some steps to follow:

  1. Choose a reputable Certificate Authority (CA) – Select a well-known and trusted CA provider to obtain your SSL certificate. This helps ensure that the certificate is recognized and validated by most browsers.
  2. Generate a Certificate Signing Request (CSR) – To obtain an SSL certificate, you need to generate a CSR from your web server. This request includes relevant details about your website and server configuration.
  3. Submit the CSR to the CA – After generating the CSR, submit it to the chosen CA for verification and issuance of the SSL certificate. The CA will validate your ownership of the domain before issuing the certificate.
  4. Install the SSL certificate on your web server – Once you receive the SSL certificate from the CA, follow their instructions to install it on your web server. This typically involves uploading the certificate file and configuring your server software accordingly.
  5. Update all necessary references – Ensure that all references within your website code, including internal links and resources, reflect the new HTTPS URL with the installed SSL certificate.
  6. Test and verify installation – Run an SSL server test using online tools or browser extensions to verify that your SSL certificate is installed correctly and functioning as expected.

6. Updating operating systems and browser software

The “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error can be due to outdated operating systems and browser software.

  • Regularly updating your operating system and web browser software is essential.
  • Outdated software can cause compatibility issues with SSL certificates, leading to certificate validation errors.
  • Updating your operating system ensures that you have the latest security patches and fixes, which can help resolve certificate authority issues.
  • Similarly, updating your web browser software ensures that you have the most up-to-date security protocols and algorithms, reducing the likelihood of encountering SSL errors.
  • By keeping your operating systems and web browsers updated, you can ensure that they are compatible with modern SSL certificates from trusted sources.
  • It is recommended to enable automatic updates for both operating systems and web browsers to ensure timely installations of security patches and bug fixes.

 

7. Checking antivirus settings and resetting browser settings

The “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error can be because of antivirus settings.

  1. Verify antivirus settings: Make sure that your antivirus software is not interfering with the SSL certificate validation process. Some antivirus programs may block or modify SSL certificates, causing the error. Check the antivirus settings and disable any features related to SSL certificates or HTTPS scanning. Disable your antivirus if required.
  2. Reset browser settings: If the issue persists after adjusting the antivirus settings, resetting your browser to its default configuration can help resolve the error. Here’s how to do it for commonly used browsers:

Google Chrome:

  • Click on the three-dot menu at the top right corner of Chrome.
  • Go to Settings and scroll down to find Advanced.
  • Under Reset and Clean up, select Restore settings to their original defaults.
  • Confirm by clicking on Reset Settings.

Mozilla Firefox:

  • Click on the three-bar menu icon at the top right corner of Firefox.
  • Go to Help, then Troubleshooting Information.
  • In the new tab that opens, click on Refresh Firefox.
  • Follow the instructions provided in the confirmation dialog box.

Microsoft Edge:

  • Click on the three-dot menu at the top right corner of Edge.
  • Go to Settings and click on Privacy & Security in the left sidebar.
  • Scroll down and click on Restore settings to their default values under Clear browsing data.
  • Confirm by clicking on Reset.

Restart your browser: After making these changes, close and reopen your browser for them to take effect.

8. Modifying the host file to allow trusted certificates

This process involves making changes to your computer’s operating system to allow trusted certificates. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Open the host file on your Windows computer by navigating to “C: \Windows\System32\drivers\etc\”. On macOS, you can find the hosts file at “/private/etc/hosts”.
  2. Right-click on the hosts file and open it with a text editor like Notepad or TextEdit.
  3. Scroll down to the end of the file and add a new line starting with “127.0.0.1” followed by the domain name of the website you’re trying to access.
  4. Save the changes and close the hosts file.
  5. Restart your browser and try accessing the website again and check if the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error appears again.

9. Adjusting antivirus settings for proper SSL validation

Here are some steps you can follow:

  1. Open your antivirus software and locate the settings or preferences section.
  2. Look for any options related to SSL certificates or HTTPS scanning.
  3. Disable any features that may interfere with SSL certificate validation or cause conflicts with trusted certificate authorities.
  4. If there is an option to whitelist or add trusted websites, add the website experiencing the error to this list.
  5. Save your changes and restart your browser and check if the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error occurs.

10. Resetting browser settings to default

This might help resolve any configuration issues that are causing the error. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Open your browser’s settings menu.
  2. Look for the “Reset” or “Restore” option. It may be located under a section like “Advanced” or “Privacy and Security.”
  3. Click on the option to reset your browser settings.
  4. You might see a confirmation prompt asking if you want to reset your settings. Click “Yes” or “Reset” to proceed.
  5. Wait for the reset process to complete, which may take a few moments.
  6. Once the settings have been restored to their default values, restart your browser.
  7. Try accessing the website again.

11. Temporarily disabling browser extensions

If you’re experiencing this issue, try temporarily disabling your browser extensions as a troubleshooting step. Here’s how:

  1. Open your browser’s settings or preferences.
  2. Look for the “Extensions” or “Add – ons” section.
  3. Find the list of installed extensions and disable them one by one.
  4. After disabling each extension, refresh the webpage that was showing the error to see if it resolves.

12. Restarting the Wi-Fi router

Restarting the Wi-Fi router can be an effective solution to fix the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error code. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Power off your Wi-Fi router by unplugging it from the power source.
  2. Wait for about 30 seconds to ensure that all residual power is drained.
  3. Plug the router back into the power source and wait for it to fully reboot.
  4. Once the router has restarted, try accessing the website again to check if you get the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error.

13. Checking SSL certificate expiry date

Here are the steps you can follow:

  1. Monitor expiration dates: Keep track of when your free SSL certificate will expire. Set reminders or use a calendar to keep yourself updated.
  2. Use online tools: There are various online tools available that allow you to check the expiry date of your SSL certificate. These tools provide accurate information about the validity period, allowing you to take timely action.
  3. Check your hosting provider: If you’re unsure about how to check your SSL certificate’s expiry date, contact your hosting provider. They can guide you through the process or provide you with the necessary information.
  4. Set up notifications: Some hosting providers offer notification services for SSL certificates. They can send alerts when the expiry date is approaching, ensuring that you have ample time to renew or replace your certificate.
  5. Renew or replace in advance: To avoid any disruption in website functionality and security, make sure to renew or replace your SSL certificate well before it expires. Aim to start the process at least a few weeks before the expiration date.

14. Check Your PC’s Date and Time

Make sure you adjust your PC’s settings such that it set the date and time automatically.

Also See: How To Fix ERR_BLOCKED_BY_RESPONSE Error?

Specific Solutions for Different Browsers (Google Chrome, Safari, Edge, Firefox)

If you’re experiencing this error on Google Chrome, Safari, Microsoft Edge, or Mozilla Firefox, read on to learn how to resolve it and ensure secure browsing.

Google Chrome

One of the most common web browsers, Google Chrome, may display an error message saying “Your connection is not private” or “This Connection Is Not Private,” indicating a potential security issue.

This error is known as “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID,” and it occurs when there are problems with the website’s SSL certificate. The SSL certificate is responsible for encrypting data between a user’s browser and the website server, ensuring secure communication.

However, if the certificate is self-signed, expired, or issued by a non-trusted source, Chrome will prevent users from accessing the site to protect their information. To fix this error in Chrome, checking date and time settings, clearing cache and cookies, disabling extensions or plugins, and updating the browser software can be helpful troubleshooting steps.

Safari

Safari often displays variations of this error, such as “Your connection is not private” or “This Connection Is Not Private.” To troubleshoot and fix this issue in Safari, there are a few steps you can take.

First, ensure that the SSL certificate installed on the website is properly configured by running an SSL server test. It’s also important to get your certificate from a trusted authority like Let’s Encrypt rather than using self-signed certificates.

Read about: How to fix the ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR

Additionally, make sure to regularly renew your SSL certificates for better security. If the error persists, try refreshing the page or using incognito mode since it might be caused by a cached version of the site.

Clearing your browser’s cache and cookies can also help resolve the issue. Another possible cause of this error is incorrect date or time settings on your computer; syncing your computer’s clock can rectify this problem as well.

Microsoft Edge

Microsoft Edge is a popular browser that many users rely on for their web browsing needs. When it comes to the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error, Microsoft Edge displays a similar message to Google Chrome.

This error can occur due to various reasons, such as an expired or invalid SSL certificateissues with the certificate authority, or problems with the browser itself. To troubleshoot this error in Microsoft Edge, you can try checking your device’s date and time settings first, as incorrect settings may trigger the error.

Additionally, if you’re using public networks, they could be causing the problem too. In such cases, accessing your website through your smartphone using mobile data can help determine if it’s a network issue.

Sometimes VPN services can also trigger this error; temporarily disabling them might shed light on whether they are contributing to the problem. Another common culprit is antivirus software compatibility; turning it off momentarily can help in troubleshooting as well.

Mozilla Firefox

Mozilla Firefox is a widely used web browser known for its user-friendly interface and extensive customization options

This error message provides detailed information to help you understand the issue and take appropriate action. By following the suggested solutions on the webpage, which provides specific resolutions for different browsers including Mozilla Firefox, you can troubleshoot and resolve this error effectively.

Mozilla Firefox is compatible with various operating systems and offers a reliable browsing experience.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error can be a frustrating issue for website owners and visitors alike. This error is often caused by issues with SSL certificates, such as using self-signed certificates or certificates from non-trusted sources.

However, by implementing the troubleshooting tips and solutions outlined in this blog post, you can quickly resolve this error and ensure a secure browsing experience for your users. Remember to regularly update your SSL certificates and stay vigilant about maintaining a trusted certificate authority to avoid encountering this error in the future.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What does the error message “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” mean?

The error message “Err_cert_authority_invalid” indicates that there is a problem with the SSL certificate on a website, where the authority that issued the certificate is not recognized or trusted by your web browser.

2. Why am I seeing the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error?

You may see this error if the SSL certificate for a website is expired, self-signed, or issued by an untrusted certificate authority (CA). It can also occur if there are issues with your computer’s system clock or if there is a misconfiguration in your web browser.

3. How can I fix the “NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” error?

To fix the “Err_cert_authority_invalid” error, you can try clearing your browser cache and cookies, updating your web browser to ensure it recognizes trusted CAs, checking your computer’s system clock for correct time and date settings, or contacting the website owner/administrator to resolve any issues with their SSL certificate.

4. Is it safe to proceed NET::ERR_CERT_AUTHORITY_INVALID” warning?

Proceeding despite encountering an “Err_cert_authority_invalid” warning can pose security risks as it means that there may be potential vulnerabilities in encrypting data between your device and the website. It is generally recommended to avoid entering sensitive information or making transactions on websites displaying this error unless you trust and understand why this warning appears.

Author:
I am a computer engineer holding a bachelor's degree in Computer Science, complemented by a Master's in Business Administration from University of Strathclyde, Scotland. I currently work as a Senior IT Consultant in Melbourne, Australia. With over 15 years of...