Whether you work in a small or large organization, you’re probably already aware that cyber attacks are becoming a huge security concern. When hackers try to break into your company’s website or network, they’ll try several different hacking techniques before gaining access to your personal information. In order to prevent these attacks from happening, it’s important to understand the various ways cyber criminals could try accessing your data. In part one of this series, we looked at the dangers of malware, phishing, and password attacks. In part two we’ll take a look at a few more common cyber attacks that could affect your organization.
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During a denial-of-service attack, also known as a DoS attack, a hacker will try to prevent legitimate users from accessing information or services from a website. These cyber criminals will target your business’ computer and its network connection to prevent you from accessing email, websites, online accounts, and other services that rely on the affected computers. The most common type of DoS attack occurs when a hacker tries to “flood” a network by sending high volumes of data or traffic to the website. The hacker’s hope here is to overload your network so it can no longer function.
How Does a DoS Attack Work?
There are a few different ways that an attacker can achieve a successful DoS attack. The most common technique is what is known as distributed-denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. This is when a cyber criminal uses multiple computers to send a plethora of traffic or data to a site in order to overload the system. While it may seem like a small issue to have your website crash temporarily, these attacks can have serious consequences when it comes to the security of your business. Most DoS attacks in the past have been a sign of protest toward governments or individuals which have led to severe punishments.
How Can I Prevent A DoS Attack?
Unless your company is enormous, you probably don’t have to worry about being targeted by an outside group for a DoS attack. The best way to prevent this security breach from happening is to keep your company’s systems as secure as possible with regular software updates and online security monitoring. This will help you identify any unusual or threatening spikes in your website’s traffic before they can become a problem. These cyber attacks can also be perpetrated by simply cutting a cable or dislodging a plug that connects to your web server, so it’s important to monitor your physical connections as well.
Cyber Attacks #5: Drive-By-Downloads
Drive-by-downloads are malicious pieces of software that can be downloaded to a computer, tablet or smartphone when the user views a compromised web page. In most cyberhacking cases, the malware will be automatically installed on a system and the user will be completely unaware of it. Drive-by-downloads are often classified as a Trojan horse or Trojan, because they deceive the user about the nature of the website they are being taken to.
How Do Drive-By-Downloads Work?
Once the dangerous malware has been installed on your computer or network, a number of different things can occur. The small snippet of code that is downloaded to your computer can wreak havoc on your system as well as any data. The cybercriminal may be logging your keystrokes to gain access to your website passwords or credit card numbers. They may also scan the system for your personal files and try to infect other office computers through your email or different programs such as Java or Adobe.
How Can I Prevent Drive-By-Downloads?
Aside from ensuring that all of your operating systems and software programs are up to date with the latest updates, there are a few things you can do to prevent this type of cyberattack. First, set up user accounts at your workplace to ensure that all regular employees and users have limited permissions when it comes to modifying applications. Then, create an administrator user account to be used only when installing, updating or deleting computer software. Do not use this account to browse the internet or read emails.
For added security, try installing a robust anti-virus software on all of your company computers. While there are many free anti-virus products available online, the paid ones tend to do a better job of protecting you from drive-by-downloads or other hacking tactics.
Cyber Attacks #6: Malvertising
Malvertising is a common cyberattack practice that occurs when an attacker buys ad space on popular and legitimate websites and loads them with ads that are infected by viruses, spyware, or malware. Some of the world’s most trusted websites have fallen victim to these kinds of attacks, including Yahoo, Spotify, MSN, and the New York Times.
How Does Malvertising Work?
Malvertising is a favorite hacking tactic among cybercriminals because it allows them to take advantage of your trust in popular companies and advertising networks. When you click on an infected display ad, you may be redirected to a malicious site or you might receive a popup that will try to download a file directly onto your device. The unintentional download of this malware can give the hacker access to your personal information, including your website passwords and bank account information.
How Can I Prevent Malvertising?
In order to protect your organization from falling victim to malvertising, there are a number of things you can do. First, consider using a trusted ad blocker to block all advertisements from displaying on websites. This will help to remove any chance of viewing of clicking on harmful ads that have been posted by cybercriminals. Another tactic to consider is to run an antivirus or anti-malware program on all of your computers. These programs can be a great line of defense against known malware that can harm your computer.
If you’re afraid you or your company may be subject to malvertising or other types of cyber attacks, order a Identity Card today. This easy to use password manager can keep your passwords and other critical data out of the prying eyes of hackers.
To read part one of this blog click here. Part One.