Download from trusted sources
Download from trusted sources
What's coming up
In this activity, we're going to focus on trust. We'll ask why is trust important online, and how you can tell if a site can be trusted.
When it comes to downloading, these are very important questions. As you'll learn in upcoming activity, it's vital that you download only from trusted sites.Start activity
The most important thing when getting documents and photos from the internet is to download from a trusted source.
There are some websites that you should be able to trust. Major organisations, like your bank, insurance company, or the government can generally be trusted, so anything you download from them should be safe.
But what about other websites?
If you're not sure about a website, the best thing to do is not download anything from it. However, if a site has something you do want to download, there are some things you can check to see how trustworthy a site is. We'll cover those next.
Look for the padlock
If you're unsure a website is safe to download from, the first thing to do is look for the padlock sign. The next pages show you where to find the padlock on a web page and what it means.
Where is the little padlock on a web page?
If you see a little padlock symbol next to the website address in your web browser, it means that the site has been checked and is secure.
What does the padlock mean?
It shows that the website is not a fake website. The people who run the website are not pretending to be someone else, for example, a scammer.
What else does the padlock mean?
The padlock also means that what you do on the website is private, which is important if you are using passwords and making payments.
Look for https://
Another way to check if a website can be trusted is to look for the https:// in the web browser address bar.
You may have noticed that your web browser puts an http:// or https:// in front of a web addresses. The s in https actually stands for secure.
So if you see https:// before the website address in your web browser, this indicates the website has taken extra security precautions, and is likely to be more safe than a site with just http://.
Find the Contact page
You could also look for a Contact page on the website. A link to the Contact page will sometimes be at the top of the page, or, on some websites, be right down the bottom of the website's home page. If the website doesn't have have a Contact page listed anywhere, it's probably not a site you should trust.
Well done! Now that you've finished the Download from trusted sources activity you'll know that there are some simple checks you can run to see if a website can be trusted. These questions include:
- do I know the organisation personally?
- does it have a padlock next to the web address?
- does the address start with https://?
- does the site have a contact page?
Keep these in mind and downloading will become much safer for you.
In the next activity, Protecting yourself from a virus, we'll look at how to guard against accidentally downloading something from an unsafe website.