How To Discover Fake Sites

Fortunately, there are several simple ways to protect yourself from scam websites to ensure that your family and your wallet are safe while browsing the World Wide Web. It may sound a bit obvious, but take a close look at how a site is written and designed. Does it have the kind of design skill and grammatical quality you'd expect from a legitimate website?

Look for things like spelling mistakes, broken or stiff English, or really obvious grammar mistakes, like the incorrect use of plural and singular words. In addition, a suitable commercial website should have basic pages, such as a "Contact Us" page and an "About Us" page. If you're not sure, call the business. If the number is a mobile phone or the call is not answered, be alert. If a company seems to want to avoid verbal contact, there is probably a reason.

 


Verify the domain name

Sites configured to spoof a legitimate site often use domain names that look or sound similar to the addresses of legitimate sites. For example, instead of FBI.gov, a bogus site could use FBI.com or FBI.org. Pay particular attention to addresses that end in .net or .org, as these types of domain names are much less common on online shopping sites.

If you want to dig a little deeper, you can check who registered the domain name or URL on sites like LookWhoIs.net and Whois.net. There is no charge for searches.


Be careful how you pay

A good practice is to never pay anything by direct bank transfer. If you transfer funds to a bank account and the transaction is a scam, you will never receive a penny of your money. Paying with a credit card offers you a degree of protection in case things go wrong.


Too good to be true?

You still can't decide whether to invest in a website, do a little research to see what other people on the internet are saying about it. A reputation, good or bad, spreads like wildfire online. If others have had a bad experience with a website, they are probably talking about it online. Look for reviews on sites like Trustpilot, Feefo, or Sitejabber to see if a site has scammed someone in the past.

If you can't find a bad review, don't automatically assume the best one, as a scam website could be new. Take all other factors into account to ensure that you are not the first victim.


 Always use a secure HTTPS connection

When you visit a legitimate site that requests financial or secure data, the company name must be visible next to the URL in the browser bar along with a padlock symbol indicating that you are logged in with a secure connection. If you don't see this symbol or your browser warns you that the site doesn't have an up-to-date security certificate, it's a big red flag. To increase your level of personal protection, always use top-notch security software to ensure you have an extra layer of protection.


Also, don't take anything for granted and don't click links to open a website. Instead, type the web address manually or save it in your bookmarks. Unscrupulous operators often buy domain names that sound and look similar at first glance. Writing them yourself or storing the one you know is accurate provides additional protection.