Most Common Cyber Attackers and Cyber Attacks

  • Malware** “Malicious” software that can damage networks or servers. This includes ransomware, Trojans and spyware.
  • Denial of service (DoS) attacks** Attacks of this type overload a system's resources, making it no longer available to users.
  • Phishing** Cybercriminals trick users into disclosing sensitive information and data. They search for login details – by posing as trustworthy companies.
  • Spoofing** Attackers disguise communication from an unknown source. But coming from a known, trustworthy source.
  • Identity-based attacks** These attacks use stolen credentials to gain unauthorised access to systems.
  • Code injection attacks** Attackers inject malicious code into a program or website.
  • Supply chain attacks** Attackers target less secure elements in the supply chain of a network.
  • IoT-based attacks** Devices from the “Internet of Things” are targeted. Due to their often-weak security measures.

How individuals can protect themselves from attacks:

  • Switch on multi-factor authentication.
  • Update software regularly.
  • Be careful when clicking on links.
  • Use strong, unique passwords.

Regularly switching off devices can prevent some types of malware from gaining access. However, there are more comprehensive solutions. Unpatched software (computer code with known security vulnerabilities) can still be exploited. You only need to switch back the device. It is also important to note that cybercriminals can use a “kill switch.” They shut down a device or network as part of an attack.

Updating routers and phones with the latest security patches is critical and vital. So is changing default passwords to secure, unique passwords. If these devices are compromised, attackers can fully control the network infrastructure.

CAUTION: the effectiveness of cyber security decreases if too many tools are used. It leads to complexity and can impair the ability to react. A balanced, well-planned cyber security strategy is therefore essential.

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