How to Recognize a Fake URL

With the increase access to internet, more and more cases of online phishing and identity theft are seen. It has become one of the biggest problems nowadays. People are being deceived everyday with fake websites and email scams. These websites portray they are some popular web site which attracts you to open it quickly. However, when you click on them, you are hacked or deceived. Remember that a URL is a web address for any website. By looking at it, you will get some hints whether it is fake, deceiving or a phishing site.


  • 1

    Take caution

    You need to take caution always while surfing on the internet. This is the most important rule which everyone should follow when they use internet. You need to avoid clicking on the ads especially pop-up ads or links which you think are not right. It is strongly recommended that whenever you receive a web address in your email account, you should type it manually on the internet explorer or any other operator you are using. Type the website’s address into the address bar manually instead of copy pasting it especially when you are entering a financial site.

  • 2

    Check the URL before opening

    You need to see the URL before opening the link. Simply take your mouse towards that link and you will see the URL in your browser. It may also be shown on your status bar i.e. the bar located in the bottom of the screen. By this you will be able to identify the name of the website. Remember not to click the URL before checking the name.

  • 3

    Checkout for @ sign

    Look for ‘@’ sign in the URL. In case it is present, you will know the URL is fake. This is because your internet browser won’t consider anything towards the left of the link. If you are provided a link www.paypal@, you are not going towards Paypal. The address towards the left is of no use. Proper sites use their names as part of their web address.

  • 4

    Spelling mistake

    If there is a spelling mistake in the web address then it is definitely a fake address. It will most likely be similar to some popular web site but actually it is a phishing site. If you are given a link to go rather than, it is definitely a fake address. People usually ignore slight differences and visit the phishing site.

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