And it is that clicking on any link without being sure of its legitimacy and origin, can be tremendously dangerous. In addition, with the increasingly common use of short URLs, it is increasingly difficult to know if a link could be potentially dangerous, since it is easier to camouflage any malicious file behind it. Although we must always be attentive, it never hurts to receive a little help. Therefore, to avoid problems, there are websites specialized in check if a link is safe or contains a virus before opening it. Although they are websites that can be of great use to us, we must also bear in mind that they are not called to replace the tools of desktop antivirus, but must be used in a complementary way.
Websites to check a link before visiting it
Kaspersky VirusDesk, leader in security
Kaspersky is one of the most reputable security companies in the world. This company has a web tool called VirusDesk, which has a dual purpose. On the one hand, check website links that we will coincide may be unreliable and, on the other hand, it allows the download similarly suspicious files to scan them avoid downloading any type of virus. This website offers both functions through a dedicated link. For this we will only have to paste the URL and click on SCAN and it will quickly inform us if the web is secure or not. When it comes to analyzing the files, it offers us three types of status: Clean, Infected and Suspicious.
If you want to use Kasperksky VirusDesk to analyze suspicious links, you can use it for free entering your website.
ScanURL, check security protocols
Another website that we should try to check the security of a link is ScanURL. It is a tool that is responsible for detecting if the links use the security protocol or https certificate. ScanURL is in charge of polling Google Safe Browsing, PhishTank, Web of Trust and also provides us with information about the Whois record of the consulted site. Once the URL that we have copied is loaded, the tool will take care of apply a permanent url that we can share so that it can be consulted. Its main drawback is that the link submission screen is ad-supported.
If we want to use ScanURL for free, we just have to access your website.
PhishTank, specialist in detecting phishing
This website is a bit different, since, unlike the previous ones, it does not focus on detecting malware, but is specialized in detect links hidden by phishing. It has a large database with insecure links that use this famous technique to steal our personal data. Once we enter the suspicious URL, PhishTank will check it and automatically will alert us to the results if our link is within your database. That is why its main handicap is that it is not as easy to check a phishing link as it is to verify the malware links. On the other hand, if we have been victims of phishing, also we can contribute to this website and add the link with which we have been deceived to your database, so that it can be detected to protect other users.
You can start using PhishTank for free to both prevent and report phishing links, by accessing their website.
VirusTotal, specialist with more than 50 antivirus engines
We are dealing with a platform owned by Google that makes more than 50 different antivirus engines available to us, so that we can analyze any file and know if it can be considered a threat or if it is harmless. In this way, this multifunctional scanning tool allows you to scan suspicious files and URLs for detect any type of malware, offering results instantly. For developers, this web application also has public and private APIs, which can be used to create our own file and link scanning tool for our website.
If we want to check any URL or files with VirusTotal, we can do it for free visiting its official website.
URLVoid, it will inform us of all the data of the URL
This web application has the function of detecting all types of viruses that are are hosted on any website. To do this, it is responsible for scanning the suspicious URL through different search engines to be able to detect any type of threat. To do this, it uses scanning tools such as Malware Patrol, Google Diagnotic, Pc Tools, DShield, Malc0de, hpHosts, ZeuS Tracker, Norton SafeWeb, among others. When showing the results we will find information about the URL and its history, as well as a list of data such as the date, site of origin, IP and the antivirus used.
If you want to scan any suspicious URL, you can try using URLVoid for free entering your website.
Sucuri Sitecheck, aimed at users and website administrators
This free online tool is not only in charge of checking the security of any URL that we are going to enter, verifying its content through 9 different blacklists, but it will also indicate us to which other URLs it is redirecting us and informing us if the latter has an HTTPS version. In this way, the web proceeds to scan any URL that we have entered, analyzing the degree of infection. In addition, Sucuri Sitecheck offers a service aimed at protect web pages against cybercriminals, being especially used among WordPress-based site administrators.
Both to check the status of a suspicious URL and to know if your website is in danger, you can use Sucuri Sitecheck for free visiting their website.
Google transparency report, powered by Safe Browsing technology
Google also has its own link checking service. For this, it has Safe Browsing technology, which is responsible for browse millions of URLS per day looking for sites that may be potentially dangerous and unsafe. Thanks to this technology, by entering our URL, it will perform a scan and inform us if the site is safe and when it was the last time the URL was verified. Also, along with malware, Google’s transparency report will inform us about the risks of phishing.
You can start using the Google Transparency Report by clicking here.
Extensions to check URLs in Chrome
Secure Browsing, check URL but install advertising
It is an extension for Chrome that takes care of parse any URL link checking the same through the database of a large number of online antivirus services. So, to verify that the URL is clean of viruses will use Avira, BitDefender or VirusTotal. Once installed in our browser, we will only have to click with the right button on the link that we want to analyze and choose the Check Link option. On the contrary, this extension has a bad reputation because installs adware without users’ permission.
It is a tool whose objective is to protect our computer since it is responsible for carrying out all the redirects in the serverr, load the redirected final page, remove it from any malware that may cause it harm, and send the safe version to our browser. This extension does not record our browsing history and allows us to browse privately and anonymously on the websites we visit. If we want to install this tool in Chrome we have a trial option of 50 MB per month or obtain higher browsing limits for professionals.
Norton Safe Web, leader in the antivirus sector also with extension for Chrome
Norton is one of the large companies in the antivirus sector with a great reputation behind it, which offers us a secure link checker capable of finding any type of malware on the site. This tool allows us to browse, search and shop online safely. To do this, it analyzes all the websites we visit to detect if there are viruses, spyware or any type of malicious software. Based on its analysis, it will offer us different security ratings for the website. In addition, it has a Chrome extension, so that it adds a new quick search functionality in our browser. Thus, with each search we perform with the browser, it will show us the results once verified by Norton.