It’s easy for scammers to create a website that impersonates the real website and trick people into sharing confidential information. I will share some few tips to identify a fake website.
4 Ways to Determine if a Website is Fake, Fraudulent, or a Scam
The web address or URL is one of the most identifiable aspects of any retailer’s site and can hold important clues as to whether the page you’re looking at is legitimate. Sites offering goods and services dirt cheap, $100 vouchers for shopping, and iPhone giveaways are a few examples of website scams you’ll encounter online. Some fake websites are obvious, but others may fool even the most tech-savvy. So how do these sites work, and what red flags give them away? You’re about to find out.
You Need to know These
- Fake shopping websites are a common form of scam, with fraudsters imitating the web pages of popular retailers
- These sites often appear very similar to those of legitimate stores, but there are ways of spotting them
- Red flags include unusual URLs, very large discounts, missing information and poor spelling and formatting
The incident shows that no website is safe from being targeted by scammers. So in order to protect yourself, it is important to know how to spot a fake, fraudulent website. Here are some of the points to keep in mind before you click on a URL.
Study the address bar
The address bar is on the top of the browser. Observe if the link of the website starts with, ‘https’, where the ‘s’ stands for ‘secure’. However, do not entirely rely on this since, unfortunately, the scammers can spoof security protocol. Also check for misspellings in the URL, for example, ‘amazon’ could be spelt as ‘amaz0n’. It is also important to check the domain extension (.com or .net or .org etc).
Look for bad language on the website
If you notice numerous language and grammar errors or even spot missing words and incomplete sentences, you must question the reliability of the website.
Check the ‘About Us’ and ‘Contact Us’ section
Observe these two pages carefully, check if the numbers given under the ‘Contact Us’ section exist. You can also check for the information about the team in the ‘About Us’ section. To verify their identity, look up for their LinkedIn or other social media profiles.
Check the social media presence of the website
Sometimes, it becomes easy to connect with the company through social media platforms. Check if the website has social media profiles. If yes, examine the followers and go through the content. Check the comment section of the posts too, sometimes users spill the beans there.
Check for too many pop ups and advertisements:
See if there are too many pop ups or advertisements on the webpage. If there are, do not click on any and close the browser as these might lead you to another cyber scam.
Use an online website checker if possible:
Certain website checkers analyse the website and generate a report informing the user about the authenticity of the website.
Reporting scam websites is also very important. If you identify any scam website you can report it either to the original organisation whom they are impersonating or to the cyber cell. This can help prevent people from falling victim to fraudulent websites.