How to Trace the Exact Link for Shortened URL

With the boom in social media and mico-blogging sites like Twitter which only allow for a limited number of characters within a Tweet, shortened URLs have become commonplace on the Internet.

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But since these URLs only contain a shortened alpha-numeric link with little or no indication of the website it redirects to — unless it’s a customised one with the website’s name — it becomes really hard to judge whether the shortened link is legitimate or not.

Here are a few online services which will help you trace the redirect address of the shortened URL and ascertain that you’re having a safe browsing experience and aren’t being led to a phishing site.

Also Read: Google Steps Up its Efforts to Make the Internet a Safer Place.

URL Manager for Android

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Android users can make use of URL Manager for expanding a shortened URL and taking a peek at the redirection link.

Open the app, tap on the ‘+’ symbol at the right bottom of the app and paste the shortened URL in the box. You’ll now be able to see the expanded URL.

URL X-ray for iOS


URL X-ray is available as an app on Apple app store as well as a bookmarklet for the browser on iOS. You can check any link found anywhere on the phone using this service.

Unfurlr (Website)


Powered by Mailchimp Labs, Unfurlr is a website that allows you to expand a shortened URL and check the website on several parameters.

The service checks the script and content of the landing page, scanning it for viruses and safety ratings by the Web of Trust.

UnshortenIt (Website and Browser Extension)


UnshortenIt is a simple service that provides both a website and Chrome and Firefox browser extensions that will help you expand a shortened link.

Once you expand the link, you’ll find the full destination URL alongwith a short description and Safety Ratings by Web of Trust, if available.

Last updated on 03 February, 2022

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