Poisoned links in your searches - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Poisoned links in your searches

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Most of us will hit up our favorite online search engines several times a day, if not more, looking for all types of information.

Scammers know that and they've figured out how to hide viruses behind the search results.

One computer security firm says we are three times more likely to get a tainted link from a search engine than an email.

We asked our cyber expert, Theresa Payton, how to avoid becoming a victim.  She says you need to triple check a search result before you click the link. 

Hovering over the link with your cursor, without clicking, will allow the entire web address to appear.  That allows you to see if anything looks garbled, misspelled or awry in any other way.  If it does, don't click.

Theresa says you should also consider running a link you're unsure of through a safe site checker.  She has put some resources below for you:

Norton Safe Web scans millions of websites to make sure they are safe.

McAfee Site Advisor Software is a free browser plug-in that provides simple Web site safety ratings and a Secure Search box.

TrendSecure Transaction Guard is FREE software that protects you against spyware while performing sensitive online tasks on a public computer, like Internet banking or other financial transactions.

Google Chrome warns you if the site you're trying to visit is suspected of phishing or malware, using Google's Safe Browsing technology.

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