Expiring Link: What it is & How it Works

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If you’re trying to share something online but don’t want to to create a permanent link, then creating an expiring link is the best solution. This article will describe what expiring links are, how they work, use cases, and how to create temporary links yourself.

What is an Expiring Link?

An expiring link, also known as a temporary link or self-destructing link, is a URL that is valid for a limited time period.

Once the specified expiration time elapses, the link becomes inactive and inaccessible, preventing further access to the shared content.

This time-limited access adds an extra layer of security and control to the shared information, reducing the risk of unauthorized access or exposure.

How Do Expiring Links Work?

Expiring links operate on the principle of time-based access control.

When creating an expiring link, the user specifies a duration for which the link will remain active, typically ranging from minutes to hours or days.

Once the link is generated and shared, anyone with access to the link can view or download the associated content within the specified timeframe.

After the expiration time passes, the link automatically becomes invalid, rendering the shared content inaccessible.

Expiring Link Use Cases

Sharing confidential or time-sensitive content is made much easier with expiring URLs. But what are some scenarios where expiring links come in handy? Here are some common use cases:

Sharing Files Online

Expiring links are commonly used for sharing files online, such as confidential reports, financial statements, unreleased images, or personal documents.

Instead of sending files via email, expiring links can be used to send downloadable CSV files, PDF files, and just about any other file type.

Expiring links work to provide limited access to files on hosting platforms without worrying about unintended visitors.

Providing Temporary Access

Another use case is for temporary download links. These links are great for providing temporary access to products, services, digital downloads, or any content online.

Software companies, college professors, and content creators commonly use expiring links to grant temporary access to something without it indexing permanently.

Event Invitations and RSVPs

Event organizers often utilize expiring links to distribute invitations or access passes to virtual events, webinars, or online courses.

By setting an expiration time on the event links, organizers can control attendee access and ensure that only registered participants can join within the specified timeframe.

Secure Messaging

In sensitive communications, such as exchanging personal or confidential information via email or messaging platforms, expiring links can add an extra layer of security.

By sharing expiring links to encrypted messages or files, users can mitigate the risk of unauthorized access or interception of sensitive data.

How to Create an Expiring Link

Clickly makes it easy to create temporary URLs for just about any purpose. Here’s how:

  1. Go to the link tool in your Clickly dashboard.
  2. Copy the URL of the web page, file, or content and paste it into the field.
  3. Click ‘Customize‘ then click ‘Expiration‘.
  4. Enter your desired expiration conditions, then click ‘Shorten‘ to create your expiring link.