Ways to Know a Fake/Bad Website

Is this Website Legit and Safe? or is this a yahoo boy website?

Look for the Trust Seal

The more prominent brands ensure they have a legit website. If you are planning to buy anything online, it is suggested that you visit websites with a Trust Seal. It can help end-users to understand that they are on safe websites. These seals are mainly found on the homepage and the checkout pages.

However, you must also note that anyone can take an image of this seal and place it on their website. So, how can you differentiate it from a legitimate website? You can look for further details on the Trust Seal. You can click on the seal to check website safety. Users must also know that only one Trust Seal is enough. If the site uses two or three of them, you must give a closer look at the site as these could be spam websites.

Go Through the Content

The content can also be used to verify a legit website. You must know that phishing emails will often lead you to a site that resembles one from your favorite brand. However, they may not pay too much heed to the content that goes into the various web pages. You must be aware that the website of your favorite brands is usually heavy. There are lots of web pages covering multiple products and services that they offer. It would be best if you did some research by going into most of these web pages and check if these are trusted websites.

Are you asking yourself – Is this site trustworthy? Have a closer look at the logo. Is the logo of the same resolution as you have seen earlier? Is this website safe? The logos on safe websites will not look smudged. Scammers usually do not pay much heed to the pictures that they put up on spam websites. The images would be of low resolution. Also, check the content to confirm the legitimacy of a website.

If there are too many grammatical mistakes, it could be a fake website. There would be spelling mistakes and broken English that you would not find on a legit website. Are there too many popup ads, or are there too many redirects? These are also reasons to believe that you are not on a legitimate website.

Pinpointing their Social Media Credentials

As most of their audience is online, renowned brands pay too much heed to have secure websites. They usually have an expert team to handle their social media channels. They try to put up engaging content and reach out to their audience. Even medium-tier and smaller brands have regular posts on their respective social media channels.

Businesses usually create their social media pages on major social media sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter. Some of them may have a robust presence on Instagram or YouTube too.

To verify the legitimacy of a website, you must check whether the social media icons are present. You may hover over the icons and check where you would be led to by the sites. You must click on the icons and check the channels whether there are frequent posts or only a dummy channel. You can also check social media reviews and go through the list of employees on LinkedIn.

The 2020 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) from Verizon states that at least 22% of all data breaches in 2019 involved phishing. But what is phishing? Phishing is a process where the scamsters target normal email users through a scam email. It would generally contain an offer you would not refuse.

Users are led to spam websites where their details and user credentials are taken. Most such phishing emails also come with malware.

When you receive any threatening email stating that your banking account or credit card would be blocked, be on your guard! Most such phishing emails contain such cyber threats. Also, check for the content and the salutation. Renowned brands would be polite when communicating with you.

The email address of the sender can also give up whether the email is genuine. Emails from corporates will usually contain the name of the organization or the brand in the domain name. These emails will never come from any generic email service providers like Gmail.

Search the Website Policies

A legit website will always have their policies listed out on the website. You may have come across a site without these policies. Is this website safe?  Ideally, the policies would be at the footer of all their web pages. It is one detail that most internet users do not check.  Most countries require businesses to pay heed to their customers’ data privacy and visitors to their websites.

Any legit website will have a data privacy policy on the website. It can be one of the ways to check website safety.

As a website visitor, you must click on the privacy policy and ascertain whether it is dubious or not. Also, check if the coordinates of the grievance officer are provided. You may look further and check whether the person is still associated with the company by searching on LinkedIn. If you are at an e-commerce company, you can also go through the delivery policy and the return policy. A genuine company will inform you about the returns process in detail.

Consult the Google Safe Browsing Transparency Report

consult the google safe browsing transparency report

Now you come to the sure-shot way to check website safety. You must have heard of the Google Safe Browsing Transparency Report. All you have to do is copy and paste the URL of the website you wish to check. It is a simple way of knowing whether to believe in a particular site. The site is not jazzy and can answer your query. Once you see the information, it will respond to your query – Is this website safe?

You may feel that the site may not be updated with all the scam websites at any moment. It is the reason we have placed it here. Once you have done all the activities mentioned above, you can check out the URL’s genuineness with this report.


As we move ahead with technology, we are always bitten by unscrupulous elements and hackers. But that will not diminish the benefits that websites bring to you. The question arises – how to check if a website is legit? You must safeguard yourself by entering the URL at the address bar of the web browser. In this way, you can ascertain that you are visiting a legitimate website.

Is this site trustworthy? If such a query arises in your mind, first check whether it has an SSL certificate. We have discussed different ways to verify the legitimacy of a website. I hope you will find it useful and check the website you are visiting before giving out your details or undertaking a financial transaction.

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