Have you heard about the danger of clicking tiny URLs? Tiny URLs are great when using Twitter, Facebook and other networking sites because of the 140-characters-or-less message limitations. Tiny URLs are generally about 25 characters long, while many URLs can run 50 to 75 characters in length.
THE DANGER – without employing an easy-to-access feature of tinyurl.com, tiny URLs can’t be verified. If you don’t know who’s including the tiny URL in their Tweet or e-mail message, you could be clicking on a phishing site and end up like my husband, wading through 400 messages every day just to find his “real” messages.
EASY FIX – EASY AS 1, 2, 3
1. Go to http://tinyurl.com
2. Enable the Preview Option Feature
3. After you’ve enabled this feature, every time you click on a tiny URL, you will receive an automatic preview of the web site you’ll go to if you click the “Proceed to this site” prompt.
It’s just a small extra layer that takes just a moment, a moment well spent if you’ve received the invitation from someone you don’t know – a potential phishing fiend.
Thanks to Michael Kassner for his post on URL shortening – you may read more about this and other IT security issues at this site. I’ll forego the tinyURL and list the full link for you: