How all those geeks keep their computers malware free is not because they use that most expensive antivirus solution, but because they practice a little caution when clicking on links and downloading files from the internet. The antivirus solution should be installed, but you can complement it with some safe internet habits. Such as make sure you are downloading files from reputed sources, check a dubious link before clicking on it and run a downloaded file through VirusTotal scan before opening it.
The free program Integrity Downloader incorporates all these safe practices and helps you avoid any malicious, redirecting or suspicious links. The program monitors your clipboard for any links (you can turn off clipboard monitoring if you want), and fetches some basic information about that file using the HTTP headers. This is pretty limited information, but you can quickly find out the file size, whether the link is redirecting to some other website and the file type.
When you click on the Download in the menubar the file will be download to the same folder where the Integrity Downloader executable is located. As soon as the file download is finished a file hash checksum is calculated and displayed in the download window. You can copy this hash to clipboard to run it on sites like Jotti’s Malware Scan (https://virusscan.jotti.org/en-US/search/hash). You can also click on VirusTotal to search the hash on the popular VirusTotal and see if the file is malicious or not.
By default the program calculates the fast MD5 hashes for the downloaded files. But you can change the settings for it to calculate SHA1 or SHA256 hashes. However, calculating SHA256 can take some time for huge files. It is a safer practice to use SHA1 as this is supported by all online malware scanners.
Conclusion: Integrity Downloader helps you avoid redirecting, malicious or suspicious download links. You can not only know what kind of file is sitting at the end of a link, but you can also check file hashes and search them on VirusTotal after the download the finished.
You can download Integrity Downloader from https://www.wintools.info/index.php/integrity-downloader.