When you do not want to include a very long URL inside your article for the aesthetics purposes, you can shorten the URL’s using many of the URL shortening services like goo.gl, bit.ly, ow.ly, mcaf.ee and dozens more. Some of the social networking services like facebook and twitter also use their own URL shortening service to automatically make the overall messages or post brief. But some of these shortened URL’s that you encounter on the internet could also be of malicious nature – they can redirect you to malware download web page or to a phishing web site.
To prevent yourself from accidentally visiting any such malicious links, you should install a good antivirus solution capable of scanning the web traffic. For example, the free avast antivirus can scan and stop the malicious links before they can do any damage. But if you want to know the destination URL hidden inside a shortened URL anyway, then you can make use of the unshorten.It web app.
All you have to do is enter the shortened URL in the URL text field and click on the Unshorten it button. In a matter of seconds the destination URL is revealed to you. It also shows you the the Web-of-Trust (WoT) ratings for the destination URL so that you can find out if it is safe to visit that URL or not.
Additionally, it displays a screenshot of the destination web page so that you can see a preview of what you could have been browsing had you clicked on that shortened URL. It also shows the hpHosts entry for the domain name indicating whether the domain is blacklisted or not.
In general, if you want to be play safe before clicking on a suspicious shortened URL, then you can use the Unshorten.It web app and find out all the details about the destination URL hidden inside it.