How can a system where all the data comes from users respond to threats quickly? Doesn’t it mean that someone must visit that scam website before others can learn about it? Yes, it does. That’s why WOT combines evidence collected from multiple sources when computing reputations.
While our primary source of knowledge is testimonies from our users, in order to respond to phishing and other threats immediately, we need more information. Currently, WOT looks for reputation data in nearly one hundred carefully chosen trusted sources. Each trusted source is assigned a reputation of its own and its output is filtered through the same algorithm we use for user testimonies. This makes it possible for us to give you an early warning of new threats as they happen, before anyone has to fall for the scam.
In other words, trusted sources give us an automated, more advanced version of a regular phishing protection you will soon find in most browsers. However, unlike your normal anti-phishing where information flows in only one direction, WOT allows users to have their say. If you think the reputations you are seeing are wrong, you can change them.
Learning from users also makes it possible to measure things that cannot be determined automatically. For example, only people can reliably tell if a site is spewing lies or contains truthful information. Or if the shopping site delivered the goods after payment. This is why we have worked hard to make it as easy as possible for you to share your opinion.