Stop scammers, phishing and malicious websites hacking your Mac

The internet is a scary place full of malware. Take care and stay safe when browsing and downloading -

WOT is short for Web of Trust and it helps you to avoid the scams, malware and bad websites that are on the internet. It is a free extension for Safari on the Apple Macand if you are concerned about your safety on the web, you should add it to your browser. With millions downloads, this is a popular security tool.

This Safari extension has several useful functions and when you perform a search at Google, Yahoo!, Bing or DuckDuckGo (and possibly others too), it displays an icon next to each search result indicating whether the website is safe or not.

Mouse over the icon and a panel is displayed that provides more information about the site.

It uses a traffic light system, which means that a green icon indicates that a link in the search results is safe and you can go ahead and click it. A red icon means that the site is unsafe in some way.

This might mean that it has malware, adware, scams, phishing, bad advertising or something similar. It is not a good idea to go to a website marked with a red icon unless you are an expert and know what you are doing.

Web of Trust for Safari

Some websites have a grey icon with a small question mark (?) and this means that it has not yet been rated. On the one hand, it may be a brilliant website with fantastic content, but on the other hand it may not be. It is unknown.

There is no need to avoid websites with no ratings. In fact, there are hundreds of millions of websites on the internet and it would be impossible to provide ratings for all of them. A lot of good websites have not yet been rated, like this one -

So where do the ratings come from? Web of Trust (WOT) is basically a crowd sourced website ratings system. People who install WOT on their computer are able to rate websites and say whether they are safe or unsafe.

By doing this yourself, you can add to the ratings and help people find the safest websites and avoid the unsafe ones. Whenever you stumble across a website that hasn’t been rated, you can rate it yourself.

1 Get the WOT extension

Open Safari, go to the Safari menu and select Safari Extensions. WOT is sometimes in the featured extensions on the home page, but if it isn't, it can be found in the security category. Click the Install Now link.

Web of Trust

2 Sign up

Safari opens the website and in the top right corner is Settings and Sign Up. You do not have to sign up and WOT works whether you have an account or not. However, you can only rate websites yourself if you have signed up for a free account. Ratings are created only by members, but can be viewed by anyone without signing up. Do you want to help rate websites? Then sign in.

3 Customise the settings

Click the Settings link on the page (or click the Safari toolbar button and click Settings), and you can customise the settings used by the WOT extension (there’s another way to access the settings which we will see later).

The settings enable you to choose whether to see all warnings about unsafe websites, just severe warnings or no warnings. The icons displayed in search results can be shown all the time, just for unsafe websites or turned off.

Web of Trust

4 Check a website

Go to a website in Safari, such as, and click the WOT button in the toolbar. A panel opens that shows the trustworthiness of the website and whether it is safe for children. Apple’s website has the highest rating in both categories.

Web of Trust for Safari

The sliders enable you to rate websites yourself and a site needs many ratings before it appears in the system. You do need to be a member though. There are links at the top of the panel for My Profile, Forum, Tour and Settings. The website keeps a list of the websites you have rated and the scores you gave.

Ratings are not for showing how entertaining or boring you found a website, they are safety ratings. A site can be safe even though you did not find it interesting. Please bear this in mind.

Have you rated this site? We work hard to keep it clean and safe.



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