How To Spot and Avoid Phishing Attempts Via Spoofed Websites

In the digital age, things you find online are not always what they seem.

For instance: a website that looks legitimate may in fact be “spoofed” – that is, a fake webpage made by a fraudster to resemble a real site. The goal of a spoofed website is to trick users into providing their sensitive information to malicious actors, potentially costing you or your business thousands of dollars in fraud.

For this reason, financial websites – like or – are near the top of scammers’ lists of websites to impersonate.

To safeguard yourself from such risks, we’ve compiled four quick, effective ways to detect and avoid spoofed websites:

  1. Verify the URL: The first line of defense against spoofed websites is to closely examine the web address. A legitimate website, like, will have a consistent and recognizable URL. Before you enter any personal or financial information, double-check that the URL for spelling errors, unusual characters, or strange domain extensions. Hackers often create URLs that are very similar to the real thing with slight variations, so be cautious!
  2. Look for HTTPS and the 🔒 icon: Secure websites use HTTPS (hypertext transfer protocol secure) encryption to protect your data. You’ll know you’re on a secure webpage when you see a padlock icon next to the URL in the address bar or “https” at the beginning of the domain name. If you don’t see either of those indicators, you are not on a secure website.
  3. Examine the Web Design and Content: If you see poor design quality, broken links, grammatical or spelling errors, or outdated content, it’s very likely that you are on a spoofed website.
  4. Be Careful with Email Links and Pop-Up Ads: Spoofed websites often lure users using phishing emails or malicious pop-up ads. Use caution when clicking on links embedded in emails or pop-up ads, especially if they prompt you to provide sensitive information or download unknown files.
  5. Utilize bookmarks in your browser for important websites: By bookmarking website you frequently visit, you aren’t just saving yourself time – you’re creating a link that you can trust every time you log in.

By implementing these tips, you can bolster your defenses against spoofed websites and ensure your private information stays private.

We encourage you to visit the Fraud Prevention page at for even more tips on keeping yourself, your business, and your finances secure!

Footer person with blowhorn

Connect with one of our payments experts today!

Contact Us