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Important Hacking Terms to Understand

Most business owners know that cybercrimes are on the rise and are putting their company at risk, but the lingo surrounding these high-tech attacks can be confusing. Phishing, malware, DoS – what does it all mean? Understanding these terms can help you get a better handle on securing your company. Here some hacking terms you need to know about:

Malware – Malware is a general term for malicious software. This can encompass a variety of types of software and typically gets on your computer via email attachments, malicious links, or installed adware.

Phishing – Phishing attacks are very common. Phishing is usually done via email, where the criminal sends you a legitimate looking email asking you to send money, confirm passwords, or otherwise reveal personal information. An offshoot of this is spear phishing which is a more targeted type of phishing attack.

Back door – A back door is a way into the software that bypasses the typical security process. A back door may be left intentionally by coders to gain access for legitimate purposes, but if discovered by hackers can put your computer at risk. Malware can also create a back door to give criminals access.

Dictionary attack – This is a type of “brute force” attack used to guess passwords by systematically going through words and common passwords.

Denial of Service – A DoS or DDoS (distributed denial of service) attack works by flooding the resource (commonly a website) with requests, thus making the service and network unavailable to legitimate business.

Man in the middle – When two computers share information via a network, that information is at risk. A man in the middle attack works by intercepting this information before relaying it to the end target.

Social engineering – The riskiest part of your network security is your users. Social engineering works by exploiting human nature, tricking users into responding and giving away access to the network.

Visual hacking – Not all hacking is high-tech. Visual hacking is done by simple observation, seeing passwords and other sensitive information left on screens, print trays, or desks.

Zero-day attack – Software has flaws. A zero-day attack takes advantage of a previously undiscovered security gap to gain access or control to the software.

Hacking is growing more common every day. With these terms in mind, you can more easily understand the types of attacks you are subject to, and can better plan your defense. Contact us today to learn more about keeping your business safe.

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