“Stay alert,” my father always told me; a reminder to his little girl that it pays to be careful, that safety is not just a matter of luck, but something to actively seek. Site Check, developed by Kevin O’Regan, aims to be a protective parent for the iPhone, allowing users to check websites and web pages for malware and potential phishing attacks.
Site Check is easy to use. You save a bookmark to your iPhone bookmarks (the program gives simple on-screen instructions when you first open it up), and when you head to a site you think might be questionable, you simply open your bookmarks, click on the bookmark for Site Check, and the program launches with the URL of the page in question in the Check field.
Alternately, of course, users can just open Site Check and manually enter a URL into the Check field. Once you’ve established that the site in question isn’t blacklisted or otherwise problematic, there’s a button to view the site in Safari.
Site Check needs to be updated often — there’s a Refresh-style icon on the application’s interface that allows users to download the latest updates. Site Check’s iTunes store description recommends updating daily, and mentions that the updates are best performed over 3G or Wi-Fi.
There’s absolutely no question that Site Check is a good idea. With the number of malware-laden URLS at an all-time high (that’s a link to a news story, not an example of a dangerous site, so don’t be afraid to click!), it’s smart to protect yourself and, of course, your iPhone.
However, I personally tried just about every Website I ever visit in Site Check, just to get a look at a “bad” result, and I couldn’t for the life of me find one. Maybe my iPhone-browsing habits are just too vanilla, but I even tried some adult sites (in the interest of research, thank you) and still came up with nothing. That’s in no way meant to imply that there’s a problem with Site Check; but for the sake of full disclosure I figured it was worth noting.
In any event, the one thing that would make Site Check better is something that the iPhone isn’t yet equipped to handle — the ability to copy and paste a link in for checking (for example, a link found in email, which users might like to check before clicking). Until then, it appears to be a worthwhile application, which does all it can with the abilities available.
Site Check has a user feedback forum here, if you’ve got suggestions.