New answers tagged

-4

Links on a website are located a remote server, "sandboxed"* inside a web browser. Links in an email are located on the local machine. *I say sandboxed here, not to imply they exist in an environment that's 100% isolated from the local machine, but to imply that web browsers generally have some characteristics that create impediments for malware to ...


1

That's a good question and you're on the right track doubting that the search engine result is more secure. What could make a search engine result secure? Hoping that dangerous links have bad ranking Hoping that search engines use blacklists You are choosing your search terms, the attacker does not know them What could make an e-mail dangerous? A spam ...


-4

I think the main difference is that a link in an email can be tracked to your actual email address. So the attacker can collect informations about your system like "language, os version, ip-address" e.g. and link this informations to an email account. This doesnt mean that this informations are not retrievable on a normal weblink, but the ...


3

One additional reason, not mentioned in other answers (it seems) is that search engines will not render deceiving attacker controlled html code (they prefer to do the deceiving themself), therefore the target domain and rest of the URL can usually not be obfuscated like you can do it in a hand crafted HTML where the text is using for example JavaScript or ...


11

You asked: Why is a link in an email more dangerous than a link from a web search? Respectfully, I think you asked the wrong question. I think a better question would be Why does cyber security training focus on email links rather than for example links from a web search? Because, according to Verizon, who does extensive analysis of breach incidents in ...


5

I disagree with the concept present in other answers that search engines provide "curated" data that would be "safe". I however concede they have a point in that web search links: Are ranked, and the user will barely pass the first few results. Reputation of top results (accrued through time) is probably orders of magnitude bigger than ...


6

Search engine finds are not completely harmless, however! We once had to fight a virus downloaded from a top-ranking search result for a somewhat specific but legitimate topic. The user did not notice (or even could notice) that their German search result was on an otherwise English-speaking website hosted in Indonesia. I found out only because I noticed a ...


3

First of all the email links are shared with you, so most probably you will notice them whereas web search links are not shared with you; they are on the web and come to you as a search result. Most likely you won't even notice all of them (when you search something on Google, you don't click each and every website that shows up in results; you click only ...


63

Let me use an analogy: It's for the same reason we tell our children not to take sweets from strangers, but at the same time we allow them to buy some in the supermarket with their pocket money. Or more technically: The difference is that in the first case you receive something you did (likely) not ask for, in the second case you yourself look out for ...


5

There are some inherent limitations in email which make it particularly difficult to determine authenticity of any communication, and as a result it has been really difficult to stamp out or control certain bad behaviour in that medium. The issue is that if you have an email account, you are implicitly allowing anyone in the world to send email to you, ...


26

One reason might be that links in emails can be "personalized", links in web searches can not. A common tactic that spammers use is to send out links containing some token representing your email address. This can be as simple as: http://totallylegit.domain/?mail=your.email@address.tld but can also be hidden in various ways (by assigning some ...


77

The results of a search engine are based on previously collected data, i.e. the engine does not starts to scanning the whole internet when doing a search but it looks through an index of seen and stored sites. The results are also ordered, i.e. the sites which fit the query best and which also have the highest reputation for good answers in general are at ...


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