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Are They Wearing White Hats ?

By Larry Johnson
Posted Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Time was when you could tell the good guys from the bad just by taking note of the color of the hat that they wore. A white one always meant that they were good and could be trusted to do the right, and honorable thing.

Those who were in black hats were the bad guys and were to be avoided like the plague. They could not be trusted. They were always the ones who did the bad things.

You can't really tell the good guys from the bad online today by just viewing a website or reading an email.

If you do business with them, you are unlikely to know that there is a problem until it is too late.

Fortunately, I have had very few negative experiences online which kind of reinforces my personal philosophy that most people online or off are going to do the right thing and can be trusted.

Still, we all need to keep our guard up when surfing around the internet.

How can you identify the good guys and bad guys these days ? Well here are a few suggestions that may help you avoid some problems.

1) Have you done business with them before ?

2) Do they have a virtual domain name or a freebie ?

3) How long have they been online ?

A quick check at: ( Can provide you with lots of information the holder of the domain name including how long it has been registered.

4) Do they provide good, complete contact information?

A phone number email address is a minimum here.

This is certainly not a complete list of things to check out about a business site online, but it will give you a good starting place.

Hopefully, it will save you some problems when trying to determine which ones are wearing the white hats?

Larry Johnson, author

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About the Author
Larry Johnson is a webmaster of several sites as well as publisher of the Biz Site Biz Ezine. He has been nationally published in such magazines as Home Business Magazine. With a background in advertising including radio and TV he began work on the internet more than 8 years ago.


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