Website spoofing

Website spoofing is the creation of a website that looks almost identical to a trusted site. The forged site has the same design as the original which makes it hard for the user to spot the differences. A popular technique used is URL cloaking which makes the URL look genuine. One way to cloak an URL is to use subdomains or internationalised domains. Other methods include the use of control characters or similar characters from different writing systems.

The objective of website spoofing is often fraudulent. The sites gather personal information from users who log in, make a transaction or enter their details on the site for other purposes.

Another type of spoof sites is parody sites. Some of them are easily recognisable. There are several fake news pages like The Daily Mash and The Hard Times and also sites like the Uncyclopedia and the Lamebook. But some parody pages can do real harm to a company or a person. For example, several US presidential campaign pages have fallen under attack by spoofers.