Common Cybersecurity Attacks and How to Prevent Them

Cybersecurity attacks are on the rise. They result in lost productivity, assets, and revenue. These attacks also cause loss of trust in companies and reputational damage.

Cybercrime exploits the vulnerabilities of networks. It takes only one weakness for an attacker to breach an entry point.

Companies typically need open access and connectivity for their employees. As a result, businesses struggle to defend all entry points to their networks.

Knowing some of the most common cyberattacks and how to prevent them is important. Therefore, you must do what you can to protect your devices and employer.

Discover some common cybersecurity attacks and how to prevent them.


Malware Attacks

Malicious software is a hostile or intrusive program or file created to exploit devices. This software uses evasion and obfuscation techniques to install itself without permission. Examples include the following:

  • Ransomware: The program encrypts files, then demands a ransom to receive the encryption key.
  • Rootkit: The software tools open a backdoor on a device, allowing the attacker to install additional malware or gain control of other devices on the network. Then, the attacker can steal sensitive company data.
  • Trojan: The malicious program is downloaded with an email attachment, then executes the task it was designed to perform.
  • Spyware: This monitors internet activity, tracks login credentials, and spies on sensitive information.

Password Attacks

Gaining a password is a simple way to access critical data and systems. Common methods include the following:

  • Brute-force attack: An attacker tries common passwords, such as password123, or potential passwords based on the target’s social media posts, such as a pet’s name, to guess the user’s login credentials through trial and error.
  • Dictionary attack: Commonly used words and phrases, depending on the target’s location or nationality, are used to guess the user’s login credentials.
  • Social engineering: The attacker uses a personalized email that appears to be from a social media connection to obtain the target’s login credentials.
  • Keylogger: This logs a user’s keystrokes to capture passwords, PIN codes, and other sensitive information, then sends it to the attacker.
  • Stealing or buying a password database: Attackers steal users’ login credentials either to access and sell sensitive information or use it themselves.

Methods to Prevent Cyberattacks

The more people and devices connected to a network, the more valuable the network. This is why networks always will be under attack. The following methods can help prevent cyberattacks:

  • Prioritize security awareness training. Almost all cyberattacks are due to human error. Because these attacks continue to evolve, training must be continuously updated. This alerts users to the latest attacks and how to prevent them.
  • Implement end-to-end encryption. Data cannot be extracted if a perimeter is breached.
  • IT should regularly perform vulnerability assessments and penetration tests. This checks for security vulnerabilities in operating systems and applications.
  • IT must monitor the environment for suspicious activity.

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