The internet is a vast world of discoveries and networks. While it is an awesome place to spend time in, no one is ever safe. Cyber attacks can take on different forms and cause all sorts of problems. Here’s how to identify such attacks and protect yourself from them.
Spotting a Cyber Attack
One common form of a cyberattack is through an urgent email or even text message from a bank or another reliable institution containing a clickable link to update your account or avail of a promo. No matter how tempting it is, never click it! Just hover the cursor above the link to see the URL, and if it contains gibberish words and names, it’s time to delete it.
Another type of cyber attack is a file containing malicious codes, usually worms or Trojans. It is usually carried by email files, apps, videos, music files, ebooks, movies, and other downloadables. Criminals target file-sharing services and websites that offer free products to upload viruses on, so be wary. These deceiving websites appear crisp and professional in an effort to seem legitimate.
Syntactic and Semantic Cyber Attacks
One must understand how criminals threaten cyberspace to avoid it. Because the latest and strongest security systems have no fight against welcoming human behavior that leaves the door open to let a virus in.
Cyber attacks are classified into syntactic and semantic attacks. Usually, criminals use a combination of the two to seal a successful win.
Syntactic Cyber Attacks
There can be various types of malicious software that attacks the computer through different channels. The most common types of software include:
- Virus – This is contagious software that can attach itself to files and then reproduce. A virus usually masks itself in email attachments and file downloads that replicate when activated and sent to all the user’s contacts.
- Trojan horse – It is named after the misleading horse from the Trojan war. Trojans hide within an email from a trusted company and carry something incredibly damaging.
- Worm – This commonly affects massive enterprises because it is a type of attack that spreads through a network in a certain location using the information it stole.
Semantic Cyber Attacks
Instead of being software-based, this attack focuses on changing the user’s perception or behavior. Usual attacks come in the form of:
- Phishing – It is maneuvered by social engineering that combines both syntactic and semantic methods. It occurs when the criminal sends out emails bluffing as a big company. Then, the victim is instructed to click through links and verify their identity by providing specific information.
- Ransomware – Here, a code infiltrates a company’s computer system or network and demands a huge amount of cryptocurrency or any form of digital money.
How to Prevent Cyber Attacks
Massive cyberattacks can occur to anyone at any time. Aside from a robust security system, ensure protection with simple and helpful habits:
- Never share personal information online unless a website starts with ‘https://.’ This is a sign of a secure website.
- Be wary when clicking links in emails and never download files from suspicious people and company addresses.
- Update your computer system as often as possible because hackers love old security systems. They already know how to break in, and they will take advantage in any way they can.
- Back up all files to prepare for the worst-case scenario.
Technology is not backing down as it will keep growing for generations to come. Criminals are also becoming as sophisticated as today’s lifestyle. Make sure to stay vigilant when surfing the web.
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