Facebook and Websense announced a partnership today through which Websense will check all external links on Facebook against their cloud-based database of malicious sites.
If a Facebook user clicks on a link and Websense determines the target of the link to be malicious, the user will see a warning dialog box giving them a the choice to continue at their own risk, return to the previous screen, or get more information on why it was flagged as suspicious:
The decision by Websense is based on the URL, the real-time aspects of the web site and the site’s reputation.
This isn't Websense's first work with Facebook. Their Defensio service protects Facebook and other user accounts and installs in the user profile. The new partnership will protect Facebook users worldwide, automatically.
Protecting a site the size of Facebook is a major undertaking. "Facebook is an extremely large platform" according to Dan Hubbard, Websense Chief Technology Officer. "Consistently ranked 1 or 2, depending on whose statistics you read."
Websense's Websense ThreatSeeker Cloud and their Advanced Classification Engine (ACE) technology benefit from the relationship, as they gain vast new sources of telemetry which should improve the quality of their data, the same data used by corporate users of their TRITON enterprise security solutions.
Also, over on our sister site TheBrainYard.com, my colleague David Carr gives you 4 steps to follow to protect your privacy on Facebook.