Bit.ly to Analyze Websites for Malware

by CXOtoday Staff    Dec 02, 2009


Popular URL shortner - Bit.ly will be using Websense’s ThreatSeeker Cloud to analyze and categorize the websites and content behind millions of shortened URLs created daily to protect end users from emerging Web 2.0 threats

The carrier-grade Websense ThreatSeeker Cloud is a security-as-a-service that delivers Web, data and email security intelligence to third-party solution providers.

"Bit.ly is one of the largest sharing services on the Web, with millions of shortened URLs created every day," said Andrew Cohen, Bit.ly’s general manager. "A large part of our success is due to the trust users have in our service and we work hard to earn that trust by warning our users about spam and malicious content."

In October, the company shortened more than two billion links. By the end of the year bit.ly plans to begin processing millions of existing and newly created shortened links through the Web API of the Websense ThreatSeeker Cloud daily.

"With the Websense security-as-a-service API powering our security intelligence, we will be able to better serve our customers and enable their use of Web 2.0 social media technology while protecting them from the latest threats," Cohen added.

In the cloud, Websense will conduct full content analysis for the IP sources, Web sites and Web content behind bit.ly links, including categorization and reputation analysis of the URL, property type, lexical and search reputation, history, age, geography, neighboring properties and more.  If a user attempts to click on a bit.ly link that leads to Web content determined by Websense to be malicious, spam or a known phishing site, bit.ly  will display an alert describing the threat potential and  provide the user the choice to safely navigate away.

In addition to providing security and classification intelligence to bit.ly users, users will now be able to report spam to abuse@bit.ly and have their feedback become part of the classification and threat protection for all Websense subscribers.