7 Types of Cyber Attack You Need to Know About


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Though cyber attacks have been with us for a while, they still seem to be something from distant worlds of Matrix or Blade Runner. They are much more real than we are used to think, so let’s have a look at the most common ones.

1. Malware

What is it?

In fact, the word Malware is a combination of two words “malicious” and “software” and there is no a better way to describe it. This type of cyber attack includes all sorts of harmful software, including Trojans, viruses and what not. It can get to your computer either from emails, system vulnerabilities and all sorts of downloads.

How can I protect from it?

In terms of combating viruses, anti-virus is your best friend. Besides, don’t go to suspicious websites and especially don’t download anything from there. Updated firewall together with some common sense will definitely help you a lot.

 

2. Phishing

What is it?

Phishing is a type of cyber attacks that plays with you altruism and naivety. Most commonly you receive an email from a third party, who asks you to follow the link and enter some personal data. They steal your personal information and use it in all ways possible.

How can I protect from it?

First and foremost, don’t trust anybody on the Internet. If you never entered a lottery, there is a zero chance you’d suddenly win a fortune there. If you never heard about a relative in Mozambique or Zambia, you probably don’t have a billionaire uncle there, who recently passed away. Luckily, most of the phishing email will end up in a SPAM folder so only a few ones will reach their final destination. And be very conscious when you give out some sensitive data like SSN or Card Number.

 

3. Password Attack

What is it?

A password stolen can open for thieves many doors on the Internet. Usually, it is bots that perform password attack. If they succeed they either require some ransom for an account held hostage or use it for spamming other accounts.

How can I protect from it?

Use strong passwords (combination of letters and numbers is always a good idea, adding some capital and lower case letters are even a better one). Change them as often as your toothbrush (at least every 3 months). If you can, use different passwords for different accounts and systems.

 

4. DoS Attacks

What is it?

DoS stands for “denial of service” and the service meant is service to a network. During such attack, too many requests are sent to the website, so the network is overloaded and can no longer function. Most common type of DoS attack is DDoS, which stands for distributed denial of service. It uses a number of hijacked computers to send traffic and in many cases, owners of the computers might even not suspect it.

How can I protect from it?

Usually, only big companies or some socially acute websites become the victims of DoS attacks. Unfortunately, there’s no a special cure from them, but you can definitely strengthen your walls by updating software, monitoring data flow being ready to take the situation under control until it is too late.

 

5. MITM

What is it?

MITM, or Man in the Middle, is not as funny as it sounds. The essence of it is that it implements a spy between data endpoints, which provides access to all the secure information you and your users provide the system with. This type of cyber attack is especially sensitive for industries like finance or eCommerce.

How can I protect from it?

Usually, MITM is performed via the non-encrypted wireless access point. So if you need to connect to a website, make sure it uses HTTPS or VPN, which is even better. This should protect you from the majority of MITM attacks.

 

6. Drive-by downloads

What is it?

Drive-by downloads are a type of malware, which is automatically downloaded to your computer. Usually, it is a snippet of code, which, once downloaded, brings the other parts through the network. And then the cyber party begins.

How can I protect from it?

Quite often drive-by downloads go for system vulnerabilities, so make sure you install updates quickly. Besides, try to minimize browser add-ons installed, e.g. if you are not using Flash or the Java plug-in, consider removing them.

 

7. Malvertising

What is it?

Malvertising resembles malware a lot. The only difference is that it gets to your computer via an ad. Once a User clicks on a malicious ad, malware is downloaded to the computer.

How can I protect from it?

Don’t click on a suspicious ad, have your firewall updated and don’t go to the gray side of the Internet. Don’t forget that any ad can be a trap, so be sensible and don’t put yourself and your computer into trouble.

 

As you see, there are many types of cyber attacks. Luckily, by following this instruction you can easily avoid the majority of them.

Vera Rabkina

Business Analyst at Rubyroid Labs


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