Old smartphones that run an old version of the Android operating system will stop being able to run certain websites starting next year. This is due to an issue that arises with SSL certificates, which are used to correctly display HTTPS sites.
Certificates are issued by the Certification Authority (CA), and since much of the web now runs securely on “HTTPS”, having them on your machine is extremely vital.
Five years ago, the nonprofit certifying body launched “Let’s Encrypt” and signed a joint agreement with another certification body called “IdenTrust.” This means that all major platforms: Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, and Linux, were able to be used in their corresponding browsers.
Now, “Let’s Encrypt” has indicated that it will not renew the agreement, and this could leave many old Android devices unable to upgrade to the latest certification, and thus encrypted websites will not be downloaded securely. The authority stated in a post on its blog: “The DST Root X3” root certificate that we have relied on in “Android” systems will expire on September 1, 2021. Fortunately, we are ready to stand alone and rely only on our root certificate.
However, this introduces some compatibility issues. Some programs that have not been updated since 2016 still do not trust our root certificate,“ ISRG Root X1. ”It is worth noting that this includes Android versions prior to 7.1.1. This means that those old versions of Android will no longer trust the certificates issued by Let’s Encrypt.
In short, if you use “Android” devices that run programs older than “Android 7.1.1” for the year 2016, you may be facing a problem next year. The only solution is to use Mozilla’s Firefox browser which uses its own certificate store and bypasses the problem.
Millions of users of old “Android” devices around the world will still face the problem of not obtaining secure website technologies by September 2021, so users of old Android phones must upgrade their phones ahead of schedule.