Cyber criminals continue to find new and sophisticated ways to exploit vulnerable users and organizations. Thus, it’s more important than ever to stay aware of the most recent and commonly used forms of cyber security threats. Here are ten of the most common types of cyber attacks.
Malware is a catch-all term for any form of malicious software. A malware attack ranges from spyware, viruses, and ransomware. One of the most common harbingers of malware attacks are suspicious links or email attachments. In the event that a malware breach on a network occurs, the software can block access, install harmful software, and obtain data from the drive. Malware attacks are some of the most common cyber security threats. As a result, there are numerous anti-malware software available to counter these attacks. In addition to installing anti-malware, it’s good practice to only open a link or attachment from a source you trust.
Another typical cyber attack is phishing. Phishing attacks are the practice of sending fraudulent communications in an attempt to appear as a reputable source. The objective of these attacks is to access an individual’s personal data, login information, or credit card information. Once a phishing attack gains access to your online account, they can modify permissions and block your access to the account. Phishing attacks commonly appear as email attachments or links from a trusted sender so it’s crucial to be cautious when opening emails.
A drive-by download attack involves the unintentional download of a malicious code to your device. This typically happens when the victim visits a website that infects the device with malware.
Man-in-the-middle attacks (MITM) or eavesdropping attacks occur when an attacker intercepts communication transmitted between two parties. Using this attack, the attacker can steal personal data, spy on the victim’s behavior, or alter the conversation between the parties. Fortunately, MITM attacks are becoming increasingly uncommon due to end-to-end encryption. However, these cyber attacks can still occur through unsecure public Wi-Fi.
Business Email Compromise
A business email compromise (BEC) attack refers to the targeting of an employee’s business email account by attackers who wish to gain access to their employer’s finances. After the attacker successfully obtains control over the employee or their email account, they blackmail them into transferring money into the attacker’s account.
This sneaky form of cyber attack uses DNS protocol to insert malware. Once the attacker gains access to the system through DNS, they can access the victim’s data without their knowledge. In addition to exfiltrating data, DNS tunneling can be used for command and control callbacks. This allows the attacker to remotely control the compromised device.
A Structured Query Language (SQL) attack involves the manipulation of SQL statements within a SQL database. If the permissions on the web application are not sufficiently validated, it can be vulnerable to an SQL injection attack. In the event that the SQL injection attack is successful, the attacker can bypass authentication, obtain sensitive information from the database, alter the contents of the web application, and remotely control the database.
Denial-Of-Service (DDoS) Attack
A denial-of-service attack is a sophisticated type of cyber attack in which the attacker floods the server with traffic. These attacks are usually intended to disrupt and overwhelm the network into going down. Distributed-denial-of-service attacks (DDoS) commonly target businesses and industries. Sometimes, the attacker wants to make a political statement, but most times, it’s to achieve some sort of financial gain.
A zero-day exploit occurs when attackers learn of a vulnerability in a network. The attackers exploit the vulnerability to target organizations using the application or system. These attacks hit before a patch is implemented.
This type of cyber attack hijacks the victim’s computer to mine cryptocurrencies for the attacker. With the rapid increase in the value of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, these attacks might become more common.