How to Avoid Fake Links, Scam Links, and Links Redirecting to Affiliate Sites

How to Avoid Fake Links, Scam Links, and Links Redirecting to Affiliate Sites

Phishing techniques have developed considerably over time and are undoubtedly the most common way of stripping an everyday user of their personal information.

Such users often become victims of identity theft apart from losing sensitive information like name, address, bank account details, etc. Considering the overall percentage of phishing has surged considerably over the years, a user must ensure preventive measures.

In this blog, we learn more about digital security and explore the various tactics and strategies you can employ to protect yourself from fake links, scam links, and links that redirect you to affiliate sites.

How Do Fake, Scam, and Redirecting Links Work?

In most situations, the exploiter tends to send bogus text messages along with a link. They know that the typical user prioritizes text messages over emails and often pays less attention to overall security levels.

As soon as the user clicks on the link, they are redirected to a page that looks almost identical to the real one. The situation worsens when users share sensitive information on those bogus pages.

Some Widely Used Phishing Techniques

There are multiple ways through which scammers can rob users of their sensitive information. In most situations, users do not give much thought to the situation they get into initially.

Users can also fall into this trap as they search Google or type a URL. Some of the most common phishing techniques adopted by modern scammers are mentioned below so you can stay cautious of them:

1.    Cookie Stuffing

This refers to the situation where scammers place tracking codes from several affiliate networks on a user’s computer.

The scammers earn a commission whenever a user clicks the link and purchases something on the advertiser’s website. The cookies are stuffed on the browsers for weeks so that scammers can get credit for any purchase by the user.

2.    Ghost Products

This is a widely used method in which scammers create a series of advertisements and pages for products that do not exist. Scammers would promote the product under the name of a certain brand in hopes of winning users’ trust.

3.    Get-Rich-Quick Schemes

Through the use of this fraudulent scheme, scammers resort to the use of overpromising advertisements to convince people that making money without any effort is possible.

This clickbait attracts a great percentage of users and usually results in fake affiliation clicks and private data breaches.

4.    Spoof Traffic

Spoof Traffic is a well-known scam in which scammers send false clicks and impression data to make it look valid. This type of scam can be widely noticed in pay-per-click programs.

Safeguarding Against Such Scams

It is a fact that phishing scams have been around ever since the inception and evolution of the internet, and these are not expected to disappear anytime soon.

The risks associated with becoming a victim of such fraudulent activities are well-known. To boost overall security, a user can consider the factors mentioned below.

Thinking Before Clicking

Users often tend to click a certain link without giving it much thought. Before opening the link, the user must hover over them to ensure they are legit. A phishing email or a text message might not even contain your name, so that is one of the elements to look out for.

Installing an Anti-Phishing Toolbar

Most popular internet browsers support the addition of anti-phishing toolbars. These toolbars run quick security checks on the websites you visit and compare them to some well-known phishing sites. If a user ever happens to land themselves on a potentially malicious website, the toolbar will immediately alert them about it.

Using Firewalls

Firewalls are a buffer between users, their computers, and external intruders. A user should use two different firewalls: a desktop firewall and a network firewall. When used together, the chances of suffering phishing attacks are drastically reduced.

Looking Out for Pop-Ups

Users often overlook pop-ups as a legitimate part of a certain website, but these are usually phishing attempts. However, users can always click the ‘block pop-ups’ option in their browser settings.

Never Giving Out Personal Information

It is a common rule that users should never give out their personal details online. Most phishing links require users to state their financial information, so users must watch for that.

Concluding Notes

Following these precautions can significantly enhance your digital security and reduce the likelihood of falling prey to phishing scams. Remember that online threats constantly evolve, so staying informed and cautious is key to safeguarding your personal information. Stay safe and protect your digital identity.