How to Determine if a website is secure

As we reap from the benefits of information technology, concerns of increased cyber insecurity continue to mount. Persons with malicious intent and cybercriminals often set various traps across the web to facilitate identity theft and commit serious cybercrimes. As a result, you should endeavor to exercise due caution whenever navigating the web to ensure that the websites you visit are watermarked with various web security features. Here are 5 key tips on how to go about validating the security of websites.

 

  1. Check the URL

Every website has a unique Uniform Resource Locator (URL) which should be appropriately formatted. A secure website should have a URL that starts with “https://.” If you find a website whose URL starts with “http://” instead of “https://,” then you can be sure that it has serious security issues.

 

  1. Check for the lock icon

Secure websites normally have a lock icon in the closed position just before “https://.” This is an indication that the website uses secure modes of communication such as encryption between the browser and the web server. If the padlock is missing or is in the open position, then you can be sure that that website has been deliberately created to siphon out crucial personal information.

 

  1. Presence of a privacy policy

Every secure website has a detailed Privacy Policy link at the bottom of every page. The privacy policy details that the website is committed to promoting the security of your information. Websites that do not have a privacy policy declaration are, in most cases, bogus and malicious.

 

  1. SSL certification

SSL certification in websites is an indication that the website is protected using a cryptographic key necessary to protect personal details while facilitating encryption of data. Websites whose SSL certification is missing are susceptible to attacks and are normally indicated by a “Not secure” label just before their URLs.

 

  1. A Secure and Verified badge

There are a host of other ways of validating the security and authenticity of websites. Websites which have a Secure and Verified badge on them are generally safe and verified by trusted web security agencies. If a website does not have the badge and raises a red flag with your computer’s internet security program, then you can be sure that it is insecure.