Community-based service for increased web surfing safety
Web of Trust (WOT) is a browser add-on that allows internet users to personally improve their web surfing safety. The community-based service features traffic light rating symbols that show website reputation.
Red means stop, yellow means caution and green means it is safe to go ahead.
Developed by WOT Services Ltd, the traffic light system makes it easy the check the reputation of sites encountered while surfing. Once you have downloaded the free WOT add-on onto your computer, WOT will show the colour symbol for each active site on the top browser bar. The symbols are also displayed in the search results of the most popular browsers.
”The idea of a browser reputation rating service was born in 2005 at Tampere University of Technology,” says Vesa Perälä, CEO, WOT Services Ltd. The rating is done by WOT users, who can rate websites on the basis of trustworthiness, vendor reliability, privacy and child safety.
Innovation lies in algorithms
WOT participates in Tekes' Safety and Security Programme. Its innovation lies in sophisticated algorithms that take user behaviour into consideration when calculating site reputation.
If a user has only rated a few sites or always rates sites as, for example, red, that user's ratings are not given weight in the reputation classification. Information obtained from enterprises providing site safety listings is also used in reputation calculations.
According to Perälä, there are similar services available from other providers, but their ratings are based on averages that are easier to manipulate. ”We have the best technical solution to prevent manipulation plus the fastest-growing community of users.”
15 million users
A total of 30 million websites have already been rated by WOT, and the service has 15 million users, with thousands of people joining the community every day. ”In the world scale 15 million isn't that much yet. It's a long and expensive journey to reach the global market from Finland,” Perälä says.
According to Perälä, the Tekes funding programme for young innovative growth companies has provided the company with valuable support for internationalisation. WOT Services Ltd also sells products including reputation data − lists of rated websites − to customers such as information security and search engine companies, with most of them based in the USA. ”The next aim is to grab the Russian and Chinese markets before someone else gets there first.”
WOT Services Ltd
Text: Anna Kauppi