Whether you’re accessing popular social networking sites or other communication apps such as your WebMail portal and IM clients, the links let you dive into a world of new information. With one click, you may end up enjoying a great story, or on the other hand unfortunately trying to crawl your way out of a potentially harming website.
You may have your anti-virus and Malware removal tools programs installed, but they will not prevent you from clicking any of those potentially-harmful-but-so-interestingly-looking Twitter, FaceBook or email links.
The best recommendation I can offer is to browse smart. That means you ought to always double-check the URL of your social networking site, and e-mail site, banking site before you log in. Most browsers, including Firefox, Chrome, and Internet Explorer, now include a color-change on the left side of the location bar to indicate that the site has been verified as legitimate. It’s always a good idea to type in the URL by hand, and to never follow links from an e-mail.
There are two general indications of a secured web page:
1) Check the web page URL :
Normally, when browsing the web, the URLs (web page addresses) begin with the letters “http”. However, over a secure connection the address displayed should begin with “https” – note the “s” at the end.
2) Check for the “Lock” icon :
There is a de facto standard among web browsers to display a “lock” icon somewhere in the window of the browser (NOT in the web page display area!) For example, Microsoft Internet Explorer displays the lock icon in the lower-right of the browser window:
As another example, Mozilla’s FireFox Web Browser displays the lock icon in the lower-left corner:
THE LOCK ICON IS NOT JUST A PICTURE! Click (or double-click) on it to see details of the site’s security. This is important to know because some fraudulent web sites are built with a bar at the bottom of the web page to imitate the lock icon of your browser! Therefore it is necessary to test the functionality built into this lock icon. Furthermore, it is very important to KNOW YOUR BROWSER! Check your browser’s help file or contact the makers of your browser software if you are unsure how to use this functionality.
There are several services you can use to verify a link.
3.) Norton Safe Web