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Google-issued HTTPS certificates and ACME DNS API now available

By: Carl Krauss, Google Domains Product Manager

At Google Domains, we believe online Security is paramount. It’s one of our core principles, and we think it’s essential not just to our customers, but to all users of the internet. There’s a variety of ways to keep yourself and your website visitors safe. Today we’re making it a bit easier with the launch of no-cost Google-issued HTTPS certificates and an API to seamlessly manage ACME DNS records.

HTTPS (SSL/TLS) Certificates on the web

When browsing a website, you might notice a padlock icon in your address bar. This means that the website has a valid HTTPS Certificate, which ensures data is being securely transmitted from your device to that website’s server. Without that secure channel, users are vulnerable to man-in-the-middle attacks where perpetrators might view or manipulate data, like credit card transactions.

If a certificate is not present, some web browsers and search engines actively warn users against accessing those websites, especially if data is being exchanged.

No-cost and available today

You can now use Google Domains to request HTTPS certificates from Google Trust Services, Google’s own certificate authority. Google relies on these for Search, YouTube, etc. and we’re making these same certificates available at no additional cost to Google Domains customers.

To help install these certificates and keep them up-to-date, we’ve also added support for the ACME DNS-01 challenge through our new ACME DNS API. For Google Domains customers that rely on our DNS servers, this API enables popular ACME clients (like Certbot) to seamlessly manage your certificates using DNS-01 challenges, whether you choose Google Trust Services or another provider like Let’s Encrypt.

Getting started

Google Domains customers can get started with Google Trust Services certificates by following the instructions here, which includes a list of ACME clients known to work with the API. If you run or contribute to an ACME client, you can learn more about the ACME DNS API integration here.

If you’re starting a new business or website, now’s the perfect time to search for your new domain from over 300+ available endings. Google Domains has 24/7 support and includes services like email forwarding, privacy protection, one-click DNSSEC, and Google 2-Step Verification, with no added cost.

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