Have you seen clickable links that show the address as bit.LY followed by some random letters or numbers? Billy is a legitimate link-shortening service, but you shouldn’t just click on one of them unless you know for sure where it will take you.
The problem with the short link, however, is that if you didn’t create it, you don’t really know where it will take you. But there is a safe way to click on a Billy link: all you have to do is add a “+” to the end of it (a “plus” sign).
You would highlight it, then copy and paste it into your web browser’s address bar, and add that “+” to the end. When you go to that revised address, you’ll be taken to a preview the Billy website, where it will show you the ACTUAL link that you’ll be forwarded to, so that you can decide if it’s a legitimate website page you want to visit.
I do this Billy preview” for every shortened link I’m asked to click on, regardless of who sent it to me or where someone says it’s “supposed” to go. Part of this site was listed for suspicious activity 31 time(s) over the past 90 days.
Successful infection resulted in an average of 3 new process(BS) on the target machine. 353 domain(s) appear to be functioning as intermediaries for distributing malware to visitors of this site, including trackcash.org/, javaistlus.com/, tracksite.us/.
Has this site acted as an intermediary resulting in further distribution of malware? Over the past 90 days, bit.LY appeared to function as an intermediary for the infection of 37 site(s) including phimdata.com/, zing3g.net/, lauxanh.org/.
No, this site has not hosted malicious software over the past 90 days. In some cases, third parties can add malicious code to legitimate sites, which would cause us to show the warning message.
Treating all shortened links as suspect isn't a bad move. Fortunately after scanning, enough pages represented by the hash, enough have been found malicious by two different browser's link scan services, so listen to the warning and shy away as it's statistically likely you're accessing malware content.
Until bit.LY cleans up their act and starts scanning and removing their own bad links, they're not to be trusted. Adblock Plus is effective for website owners that can't offer quality content.
Sometimes, the address of a web page can run to hundreds of characters, large chunks of which are meaningless strings of random numbers and letters. Such URLs are impossible to type, when you're following a link in a printed document.
In the case of Billy, specifically, the answer is simple. You'll find yourself at a page which tells you the full address, gives you a summary of the page you're heading to, and even gives you some stats about the shortened link such as how many people have clicked on it in the past.
If you are on Twitter or even receiving email you might have noticed Billy (URL) Links. Billy is a URL shortening service and a link management platform.
Basically, with Billy you can take a long web address and shorten it to something that is more manageable. One site I often see needing to shorten its link is Amazon who is well-known for its long web addresses.
I did some research and YES there is a way to check these links before you accidentally give yourself a virus or worse– crash the internet. Step 2: Once you have copied the URL head over to your favorite browser and paste the link into the address bar at the top, or you can key it in manually if you wish.
Step 3: Now you should see some information about the URL: when it was created, the original website address, and how many clicks it has. There is a website I found that will check many shortened URL links (including Billy).
Once on the website all you need to do is paste or key in the shortened URL link in the box at the top of the page. This site gives you more details than the Billy one does so this is the better way to go when making sure a web address is safe or not.
WARNING: Always remember to be Careful when clicking out any link online or in email. See, you can check URL links like Billy easily and safely by following these steps.
Branded links are powerful marketing assets. Businesses of every size and within every industry leverage them to power their social media, digital marketing, and customer service efforts.
Every link, whether branded or not, has a protocol, domain name, and path. Branded links follow the same structure but instead of the “bit.LY” they have a unique domain name.
Businesses use these links on social media, in SMS messages, at live events, and on printed materials, among many other ways. Since branded links replace the “bit.LY” with the name of your choosing, your customers recognize the source.
When you edit the path of a branded link (which we like to call the “back-half” of the link) you give people a preview of where you’re sending them, further building trust and boosting click-throughs. Auto-branding keeps your unique domain name in the link, even when another user shortens it using Billy.
This ensures no matter who shares your link, your brand remains front and center. Thousands of our free and paid users use generic links every day to connect with customers and analyze their cross-channel performance.
Email links are usually legitimate, but sometimes they are a trick designed to open up your computer to a virus or malware. This article explains what to look for in any link you consider clicking and shares key safety tips to keep hackers away.
Hover your cursor over the link to reveal the URL without clicking on it and accessing its destination site. Use a link-expansion service such as ChecShortURL to reveal a short link's true intended destination.
These emails usually instruct victims to “verify your information” by clicking a link, ostensibly to go to the bank's website. If you received an unsolicited email that is supposedly from your bank asking you to click a link, then you are likely the target of a phishing attack.
Visit your bank's website through your web browser, either by entering its address or accessing a bookmark. Using encoding, malware distributors can mask destinations, commands, and other nasty stuff within a link so that you can't read it.
They index the remote destination and then report what was found, so you never have to load the site on your own computer. A second-opinion malware scanner can offer a second line of defense should your primary antivirus fail to detect a threat.
Even the best security software can’t protect you from the headaches you’ll encounter if you click an unsafe link. Unsafe links appear to be shortcuts to funny videos, shocking news stories, awesome deals, or “Like” buttons, but are really designed to steal your personal information or hijack your computer.
Your friends can unknowingly pass on unsafe links in emails, Facebook posts, and instant messages. You’ll also encounter unsafe links in website ads and search results.
Avoid scans a link using multiple services, such as Google, Moot, and Norton Safe Web, and reports the results to you quickly. Avoid scans several security databases for information on sketchy Web domain names.
The URL-shortening service Billy has suffered a data breach, and the collateral damage has spread to include Facebook and Twitter accounts. “For our users' protection, we have taken proactive steps to ensure the security of all accounts, including disconnecting all users' Facebook and Twitter accounts,” the Billy blog posting said.
However, an attacker who got the OAuth tokens could still use them to access Facebook or Twitter accounts, at least temporarily. “Please take the following steps to secure your account: change your API key and OAuth token, reset your password, and reconnect your Facebook and Twitter accounts,” Josephson writes.