NET:: ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID – This is an error in Chrome that usually occurs when the SSL certificate is not installed correctly on the website server.
SSL certificates are critical components for any modern website. They not only harden your website security but also give you a cutting edge over competitors. Nevertheless, if you buy SSL Certificates and fail to install it correctly, browsers will start displaying a plethora of error warnings, including the NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID in Chrome. That may not be the only cause, though.
In this quick guide, we exhaust all the possible causes of this error so you can solve it quickly from the comfort of your seat. Let’s dive in.
What is NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID Error?
Just like most browser errors, the NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID error is an error that will mostly result from poor SSL certificate installation on your server. However, it may also result from other issues like outdated browsers or OS, among others.
NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID Error – Fixing Guide
From the information above, you must have noted that this problem can be due to your browser’s problem or server misconfiguration. Read on to learn the real causes and, most importantly, how you can solve this problem on your own.
#1. Incorrect Date and Time
Sometimes, Chrome will display this error when your device’s date and time are not set correctly. This is because the digital certificates installed on the website servers are designed to expire after some duration so your web browser may be ‘fooled into thinking’ that the certificate on the website you’re trying to access is outdated and can’t be trusted anymore.
You can resolve this issue by clicking the device’s date and time settings on the right-bottom side of your PC and click on the ‘Date and Time setting’ link and enable ‘set time automatically’ as per your country time zone.
#2. Cached Data
Cached data are essential in enhancing your browsing experience since they help reduce the load time for your browser. Unfortunately, the more you continue to browse, this data builds up eating a lot of disc space in your device.
Some of these cached data and cookies may also be corrupted, thus leading to this error. Therefore, you may need to clear your cached data to try resolving this problem.
Note that these data usually don’t keep critical information, so clearing cached data won’t harm your device. To remove the cached data, press the buttons: CTRL+SHIFT+Del on your computer/laptop keyboard.
This command will open a new page like the one shown below.
Click ‘Clear Data,’ and you’ll be good to go.
#3. Site Address Misconfiguration
You may not be aware of this, but modifying your website protocol from the insecure HTTP to secure HTTPS before installing a valid SSL certificate may also make your website to display the NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID error on Chrome.
The best way to resolve this is to configure it to the original protocol and only change when you install an SSL Certificate and migrate from HTTP to HTTPS. If you use a CMS like WordPress, rectifying the site address misconfiguration is even more comfortable.
Log in to your WordPress website and open General Settings.
On this page, verify the URL of your website and check if the problem has been resolved.
#4. Proxy Settings
The proxy settings on your PC have a considerable influence on the websites you browse. There are specific misconfiguration errors that may limit you to browsing just select websites, and this may also lead to the NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID error.
Resolving the proxy settings issue is simple: You only need to configure your proxy settings to detect settings automatically. Here’s how to do it.
Right-click on Network Access Icon on your Computer/PC, navigate to Internet Settings, and select ‘Connections.’ After that, click ‘LAN Settings, and a new box will open up.
In this new box, checkmark the option ‘Automatically Detect Settings’ then click ‘OK’ to save the changes.
#5. Chrome Extensions
You could also be having corrupted chrome extensions installed that is causing the browser to misbehave, so you see this error. To see if the error is due to some malicious or problematic extensions, you should switch to Incognito browsing mode first.
If you continue seeing the errors, try disabling the extensions one by one until you catch the one causing all this mess and delete it. To find the installed extensions, launch Chrome then opens the menu icon on the top right marked with three dots.
Navigate to ‘More tools’ then select ‘Extensions’ from the new menu.
Disable them one by one while checking if the problem resolves until you find the problematic one.
#6. Check Your Anti-Virus Software/Firewall Installation
The NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID error may also be due to your antivirus or firewall software misconfigurations. To resolve this, check to ensure that your firewall/antivirus software is not check-marked to disable HTTPS scanning.
If your software doesn’t have this option, disable it then check if the problem has been resolved. If resolved, you may need to look for another more reliable antivirus software/firewall. If not resolved still, try any of the options discussed below.
#7. Forceful Redirects
Note that not all SSL Certificates are designed to be able to provide cover for both non-www and www versions of websites. Therefore, you must check to confirm that you’re not forcing your users to use either a www or non-www version of your website that you didn’t enter when purchasing the SSL Certificate.
To achieve this, ensure that your digital certificate only covers for the default domain version of your website that was registered when obtaining the certificate.
#8. Incorrect SSL Certificate Installation
The NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID error is also a common issue, especially in cases where there is a name mismatch between the certificate and domain. This is usually common if you install an SSL Certificate, but it does not provide cover for the web address you’re trying to access.
To check for this potential mistake, you’ll need to compare the domain certificate against the domain name it was issued to. Note that the Wildcard Certificates provides cover for single-level subdomains; therefore, if you’re using a wildcard SSL certificate, you’ll need to check this too.
On the same note, SAN Certificates do count individual domains separately that you should check carefully.
#9. SSL Cache Errors
Every time that your server requests for the certificate information to verify identity during SSL sessions running on HTTPS, it saves the selected certificate in a cache. Usually, this selected certificate may remain in cache until when you restart your computer.
SSL Cache errors may also cause the name mismatch error leading to NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID error message on Chrome. Just like the cached data on your browser, clearing SSL Cache isn’t harmful in any way.
To clear the SSL Cache, launch Chrome then open Settings. From the Settings tab, select Advanced Settings, then click ‘Change Proxy Settings.’ After that, select ‘Clear SSL State’ to solve the possible SSL name mismatch error.
If the error doesn’t go away still, check this one last option.
#10. Outdated Operating System (OS) or Browser
Another possible cause of this type of error in Chrome is an obsolete OS or Chrome browser. To resolve the issue, therefore, be sure to update your browser and OS. You should listen to users’ queries about facing such error, if it is the same happening to them, you should immediately update browsers and OS.
In as much as SLL Certificate is a must-have for your website, the NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID error is a problem that might impact user experience massively on your website. We hope these recommendations helped solve the issue for you.
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