Soumya Prakash Pradhan

The digital landscape is expanding rapidly, accompanied by a surge in fraudulent activities across the internet.

The online realm teems with scams and scamsters perpetually innovating new methods to defraud, utilising various channels such as apps, messages, emails, and more. 

Hackers employ fraudulent websites to deceive users into divulging personal data, leading to malware infections, phishing attacks, and data theft.

While this may seem daunting, there are several measures to protect oneself from such malicious sites.

Here are detailed insights into five key signs to watch out for to evade the pitfalls of fraudulent websites:

Check URL Security: Always verify the URL prefix, ensuring it begins with "https" rather than "http," indicating a secure sockets layer (SSL) encryption, denoted by a small lock icon in the browser address bar.

Spot Typos and Design Flaws: Fraudulent sites often exhibit design flaws and typos in their URLs or content, signalling their illegitimacy. Be vigilant for discrepancies in familiar websites' interfaces and functionality.

Beware of Alarmist Tactics: Hackers employ pop-ups, flashy warnings, and alarming messages to create panic and prompt impulsive actions. Excessive pop-ups or warnings, especially those mimicking police sirens, indicate a dubious website.

Exercise Caution with Offers and Prizes: Fraudsters entice users with tempting prizes and coupons, aiming to lure them into clicking links leading to malware installation or data theft. Avoid clicking or sharing personal information on such sites.

Heed Browser Warnings: If your browser flags a website as unsafe or displays a warning, refrain from proceeding, as it likely poses risks. Take heed of these warnings to safeguard your online security.

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