types of threats and vulerabilitiesAs the recent epidemic of data breaches illustrates, no system is immune to attacks. Any company that manages transmits, stores, or handles data must institute and enforce mechanisms to monitor their cyber environment, identify vulnerabilities, and close up security holes as quickly as possible.

Before identifying specific dangers to modern data systems, it is crucial to understand the distinction between cyber threats and vulnerabilities.

Cyber threats are security incidents or circumstances that can have a negative outcome for your network or other data management systems.

Examples of common types of security threats include phishing attacks that result in installing malware that infects your data, failure of a staff member to follow data protection protocols that cause a data breach, or even nature’s forces that takes down your company’s data headquarters, disrupting access.

Vulnerabilities are the gaps or weaknesses in a system that make threats possible and tempt threat actors to exploit them.

Types of vulnerabilities in network security include but are not limited to SQL injections, server misconfigurations, cross-site scripting, and transmitting sensitive data in a non-encrypted plain text format.

When threat probability is multiplied by the potential loss that may result, cybersecurity experts refer to this as a risk.

TYPES OF CYBERSECURITY THREATS

Just as some germs and diseases can attack the human body, numerous threats can affect hardware, software, and the information you store. Some of the major ones include the following:

  • Viruses are designed so that they can be easily transmitted from one computer or system to another. Often sent as email attachments, viruses corrupt and co-opt data, interfere with your security settings, generate spam, and may even delete content.
  • Computer worms are similar; they spread from one computer to the next by sending themselves to all of the user’s contacts and subsequently to all contacts’ contacts.
  • Trojans. These malicious pieces of software insert themselves into a legitimate program. Often, people voluntarily let trojans into their systems in email messages from a person or an advertiser they trust. As soon as the accompanying attachment is open, your system becomes vulnerable to the malware within.
  • Bogus security software that tricks users into believing that their system has been infected with a virus. The accompanying security software that the threat actor provides to fix the problem causes it.
  • The adware tracks your browsing habits and causes particular advertisements to pop up. Although this is common and often something you may even agree to, adware is sometimes imposed upon you without your consent.
  • Spyware is an intrusion that may steal sensitive data such as passwords and credit card numbers from your internal systems.
  • A denial of service (DOS) attack occurs when hackers deluge a website with traffic, making it impossible to access its content. A distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack is more forceful and aggressive since it is initiated from several servers simultaneously. As a result, a DDOS attack is harder to mount defenses against it.
  • Phishing attacks are social engineering infiltrations whose goal is to obtain sensitive data: passwords and credit card numbers incorrectly. Via emails or links coming from trusted companies and financial institutions, the hacker causes malware to be downloaded and installed.
  • SQL injections are network threats that involve using malicious code to infiltrate cyber vulnerabilities in data systems. As a result, data can be stolen, changed, or destroyed.
  • Man-in-the-middle attacks involve a third party intercepting and exploiting communications between two entities that should remain private. Eavesdropping occurs, but information can be changed or misrepresented by the intruder, causing inaccuracy and even security breaches.
  • Rootkit tools gain remote access to systems without permission and can lead to the installation of malware and the stealing of passwords and other data.

COMMON NETWORK VULNERABILITIES

Even seemingly minor flaws or oversights in the design or implementation of your network systems can lead to disaster.

Some of the most common network vulnerabilities include the following gaps in your application security: when applications are not kept up-to-date, tested, and patched, the doors are open to code injection, cross-site scripting, insecure direct object references, and much more. 

Penetration Testing Services
Penetration testing is a cybersecurity best practice that helps ensure that IT environments are adequately secured and vulnerabilities are appropriately patched. A penetration test seeks to determine whether and how a malicious user can gain unauthorized access to information assets.

For over a decade, TrustNet has performed penetration tests to help organizations uncover hidden security vulnerabilities. Our proven methodology provides actionable steps for ensuring the security of your systems.