The Unintelligible Rambling Link (URL)

Earlier this year we wrote about digital literacy and web addresses, also known as URLs. In that post, we addressed the importance of identifying the websites you visit. After all, understanding your web location is key to avoiding scams.

Recently, Google announced that it is in the research phase of developing a better way to present online identities because Uniform Resource Locators (URL doesn’t actually stand for Unintelligible Rambling Link!) are too complicated.

We applaud Google’s move to look at ways to improve web identification, but we’re skeptical about whether this will be an easy fix. No matter how the web location is presented, people will likely still have to pay attention because scammers will surely find a way to exploit any new method developed by Google.

URLS are confusing

Until this better way is implemented, here’s how we explain website addresses.

Domain

All websites have a domain. It’s like a piece of land on the internet. Our domain is cybersafeworkforce.com, and it’s the path to our home page. To find Securing Your Users, our blog home, use the web address blog.cybersafeworkforce.com.

When you own a domain (a piece of the internet), you can put anything you want there—blogs, games, shops… MALWARE!

Let’s pretend you have a domain, MyPieceOfTheInternet.com. On this domain, you want to put a game so that all of your co-workers can play it. The website address (URL) for this game might be:

http:// game . MyPieceOfTheInternet . com

or

http:// www . MyPieceOfTheInternet . com /game

How Cybercriminals Trick You

Cyber criminals know that most people don’t understand domains or internet property. So, they may copy your game’s website and host it on their own domain:

http:// game . MyPieceofTheInternetScammer . com

or

http:// www . MyPieceofTheInternetScammer . com /game

If you’re not paying attention, you enter your password without realizing it’s not the right website! Always carefully review the website address (URL) to confirm your location before you interact with the web page.

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