Cyber threats and attacks are varied in how they are carried out. From spear-phishing to ransomware, attackers will take no mercy and are happy to attack any individual and any business that they can. With the rise of technology, these cyber attacks have become more and more advanced. If you are unfamiliar with cybersecurity threats, this article will define a cyber attack and the different types of attacks that can occur.
What Is a Cyber Attack?
A cyber attack or cyber threat is a malicious act that seeks to deliberately breach and access data or another individual, organization, or business. Attackers are usually seeking some benefit from the breakdown of their victim’s network.
Cyber attacks can come in many forms, but below are some of the more common ones that are harmful to both individuals and businesses.
- Phishing Attacks
Phishing attacks are typically conducted via email which intends to trick the email recipient into giving up sensitive data such as credit card information or login details. The attackers fool their victims by appearing as a credible presence online.
Phishing attacks use social engineering instead of exposing technological weakness. Spear phishing is slightly different, as the attacker takes the time to learn about their victim so that they can convincingly impersonate them. This is a very common form of cyber threat and has the potential to be detrimental.
- Malware Attacks
Malware attacks breach networks by fooling their victims by appearing as reputable sources and so trick individuals and businesses alike into clicking on dangerous hyperlinks or downloading vicious malware.
Malware is an umbrella term that includes spyware, viruses, ransomware, and trojans. Once someone has clicked on that link it will install any one of this dangerous software.
A ransomware attack involves encrypting data from the victim and then demanding a ransom in order to let the user have access to their data. Whether you are a solo individual or a massive business, this kind of attack can leave you in a very dire situation, as you will either lose a lot of money for the ransom or pay the price with a loss of key data.
To prevent this kind of attack, users should consider using an IT network security company to protect themselves against these malicious cybersecurity attacks.
The term trojan comes from the story of the Trojan Horse in ancient Greek history. A trojan is a specific type of malware that appears to be something it is not, for example, a victim may think they are downloading safe, standard software, however, once downloaded it attacks the hosting system from the inside with dangerous code.
- Man In The Middle Attack
A Man in the Middle Attack involves the attacker placing themselves into a two-party interaction. In doing so they can steal sensitive data and information. There are many ways an attacker can gain entry into your hosting system. One very common example is this use of an unsecured network. So, if you are using an unsecure Wi-Fi, an attacker can easily gain entry to your device.
Consequently, it is important to pay attention to the networks that your phone connects to, and sometimes that free Wi-Fi can be a gateway to a cyber attack.
- Malware on Mobile Apps
There has been an increase in the number of cyber-attacks being conducted via mobile devices. Attackers can embed dangerous malware in apps, and so, once a dangerous app has been downloaded the attacker gains access to all personal data, including location information, financial details, and more.
Tips For Preventing Cyber Attacks
Prevention is a far better alternative than recovery. There are lots of ways for you to ensure safety from a cybersecurity attack. See below for some key methods in preventing cyber threats.
- Avoid using unsecured Wi-Fi networks
- Always use strong passwords
- Backup all of your data
- Keep your software up to date
- Use a firewall
- Learn about Phishing scams – if you have staff, then provide staff with security training.
- Strengthen social media security – ensure no weak passwords!
To receive more in-depth information about preventing cyber threats, see here.
Unfortunately, there are a number of cyber threats facing individuals and businesses in this current climate. If you are worried about becoming a victim, then the best thing to do is to put precautionary measures in place. Download security tools and network protection programs. Having an awareness of cybersecurity dangers and how to stop them will be invaluable!