Google launches 'neighbourhood watch' malicious website warning system

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Google
has teamed up with the Stop Badware Coalition to warn its users when they may be about to visit a web page that contains malicious or deceptive code.

If a user clicks on a search result that may lead to a dodgy page, users are first directed to a warning page at stopbadware.com telling them that they may be about to put their computer at risk:

"The website you attempted to visit has been reported to StopBadware.org as a site that hosts or distributes badware. You landed on this page because members of the public reported this website to StopBadware.org as hosting or distributing badware."

Neither Google nor SBC will stop people from visiting the page, but they’ll explain the potential threats, and recommend surfers go back to the results page and choose another item.

John Palfrey, a professor at Harvard Law School and a driving force
behind the project, has likened the initiative to a neighbourhood watch
scheme. So, twitching virtual net curtains?

Dubious web pages are not removed from search engine results, merely
flagged based on user feedback, and Paltry would like to see other
search engines take up the service.

"We very much encourage other search engines to join and use the data in the same way," he said. "We’re quite open."

Here’s an example of
a page a user may face if they try to visit a bad site.

What do you think of this service?

Andy Merrett

One thought on “Google launches 'neighbourhood watch' malicious website warning system

  • It feels a bit like they’ve announced the service over the weekend but haven’t actually got it working. To be honest I haven’t seen it working live as I don’t spend my time on malicious sites!

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