Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Browse Safely & Tools for Looking up Potentially Malicious Websites

The following list contains free online tools for looking up a potentially malicious websites. Some of these tools will lookup their own historical data for a particular website, while others perform live tests. The URLs are in alphabetical order. 

Even though these websites allow you to initiate an online check on-demand, it is not the most convenient way for everyday use, especially when you jump from one website to the next. In that case, I strongly suggest the use of a browser plug-in (extension) that will do this for you automatically. On that note, know that there are several extensions that will do this check for you in real-time. 

I tested a bunch of them and to be completely honest the most lightweight and effective one I found was the Avira Browser Safety. This is a tiny extension that will not only lookup and check each website you visit for any malicious content but it will also list all trackers on the website. Also, the Avira Browser Safety extension allow you to select which trackers would you like to turn off by flipping a switch next to each tracker listed. Combining this with you favourite extension that blocks ads makes visiting website a little bit less scary process. 

Please note that I am referring to legitimate websites that have been breached with the only purpose to deliver malware to its visitors. In many cases, this breach stays undetected for days or weeks before it is picked up by the developers or the security team. Also, the reason why I am suggesting an ads blocker is because there have been many cases where ads have been compromised, and contain malicious JavaScript that infects visitors. (see: Malvertising) 
If you think you know of a site that can do something similar but it is not on this list, let me know and I will be happy to add it. 

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