There’s no denying that the world has become more tech-friendly and digitally connected than ever, especially after Covid-19. But it also can’t be denied that cybersecurity risks have also tagged along. Cyberattacks have been a genuine concern over the years for individuals, businesses, and organizations. This thing goes both ways. As we progress further in technology, new cyber risks will also emerge. These risks can be mitigated or prevented to some extent, but can’t be eradicated forever.
What are these cybersecurity risks that individuals or organizations face? Let’s find out.
This is the most common form of cyber threat. It has been existing ever since the world got introduced to the Internet and will remain a consistent problem till the Internet exists. Malware is a type of malicious virus or unwanted software designed to damage the system or cause system malfunction. It can include ransomware, adware, spyware, etc.
In order to prevent malware attacks, one must adopt a proactive approach. Firstly, you must have the latest anti-malware program installed on your system. Secondly, one must be self-aware of the suspicious links, files, or activities which could invite malware to the system. Being self-cautious along with having antivirus software would eliminate most of your malware concerns.
Have you ever been in a situation where you logged in to one of your accounts only to find that its password has been changed? Though we hope this didn’t happen to you and neither should happen in the future, people have become victims of password theft. And imagine the seriousness if this happens to any enterprise where they lose access to any software and the sensitive information goes into the wrong hands.
Password theft usually happens when an unauthorized third party manages to crack your password through different means. They may use “brute force” programs to make repeated attempts or may steal the credentials from a vulnerable location. Cyberattackers may also use social engineering to lure or manipulate users into sharing their password information.
One of the best ways to secure your password and keep your account safe is by using the two-factor authentication method. This protection method doesn’t let any unauthorized person gain access to your account or steal your information as it follows a 2-step process to verify the authenticity of a person. Even if the attackers succeed in the first attempt, they won’t be able to get access unless the second authentication is successful as well.
The phishing attack is a type of social engineering attack which is used to steal user information such as their login details or credit card details. Typically, phishing is when an attacker pretends to be a legitimate source or a trusted entity and deceives a victim into opening an email or text message which contains a malicious link, upon clicking which the attacker gets access to the sensitive information or installs malware to the system.
To prevent yourself from phishing attacks, remember to keep a few things in mind. Phishing emails or messages often contain grammatical and syntax errors. They usually target people by setting a trap of money and great career opportunity. Never fall into that trap. Though, at times, you would be able to guess a phishing message just by looking at it. Again, it is important to be self-aware. Any official organization won’t request you for any personal data.
Cross-site scripting or XSS attacks occur when malicious scripts are injected into trusted websites. Typically, attackers use a web application to send malicious code to the end-user, usually in the form of a browser-side script. This causes unwanted behavior in the interactions that the users have with the application.
The browser will execute every script it receives. It can’t identify on its own whether the script is coming from a trusted source or not. Believing that the script has come from a trusted source, the malicious script can then gain access to any cookies, session tokens, or other sensitive information retained by the browser. If the end-user has privileged access within the application, there is a high chance that the attacker gains full control over the entire app functionality and data.
To prevent these attacks, you can leverage Content Security Policy (CSP) to prevent the website from accepting any in-line scripts. You can also install script-blocker add-ons to your browser. Additionally, you can also make use of a Web Application Firewall (WAF).
Interception attacks are usually attacks against confidentiality. These attacks permit unauthorized users to access the end user’s data, applications, or environments. It can be in the form of eavesdropping where the unauthorized party listens to the info between the end-user and the host. Or it can simply be reading emails or getting unauthorized access to some files. Such attacks can cause our assets to become unstable or unavailable for use on a temporary or even a permanent basis.
Detecting Interception attacks is a difficult task. One safe approach to follow is to avoid websites that are not using HTML5. Another way can be to encrypt the network through a VPN.
A distributed denial of service or DDOS is a cyberattack where the perpetrator targets a network resource to make it unavailable for the intended users, either temporarily or permanently, by disrupting the services of a host connected to the network. The attackers overload the server with heavy Internet traffic and slow down its ability to handle incoming requests. When it becomes incapable of handling further requests, the website hosted by the server slows or shuts down. The heavy incoming traffic originates from many different sources.
Mitigating DDoS attacks call for more sophisticated strategies as simply blocking a single source won’t prevent the damage. You should have an understanding of the normal and abnormal traffic coming to your website. One of the best ways to detect a DDoS activity is by using Continuous Monitoring (CM) to analyze traffic in real-time.
These are some of the cyberattacks or cyber security risks that have accelerated rapidly in this digital age, and continue to grow in complexity. What’s important is to have a brief understanding of these risks, have the safety protocols beforehand, and adopt a proactive approach to deal with these attacks in order to defend the system or network.
P301, 3rd Floor, JMD Megapolis,
Sector-48, Gurugram – 122018
+91 (124) 421-2275
WeWork, Magarpatta Futura,
Magarpatta Rd, Kirtane Baugh,
Pune, Maharashtra – 411028
16192, Coastal Highway, Lewes,
+1 (302) 208-6888