Cyber Security. Sounds like protecting things online, right? That’s exactly what it is but with a variety of components. Think about ice cream. We all know what ice cream is and how we go about eating it- what’s key to note is that ice cream has different flavors. These different flavors are the different components we’re going to address here.
What is Cyber Security?
Cyber security is an art that requires protection. Essentially, cyber security experts are “doing art” by acting as guardians for the virtual world.
- The art of cyber security is made up of tasks like protecting networks, devices, and data from getting into unwanted hands!
What are the dangers that could occur if someone has poor cyber security?
- Malware could erase your entire system
- Your files could be changed and manipulated
- An attacker could use your device to attack other devices
- Your credit card info could be stolen. The attacker could go as far as making purchases with it too!
So the question becomes, how should one defend themselves against a cyber attack? It all starts with understanding the basics involved with cyber security which is exactly what we’re going to delve into!
Let’s start by understanding some common terms used in this field. Once you familiarize yourself with these terms, we’re one step closer towards increasing your safety from such attacks!
People who want to show certain flaws in systems and software so that they benefit. The way they show these flaws is illegal and a violation of the software in itself. It’s kind of like you asking someone for permission to do something– they say no, yet you still do it. Except in this, hackers don’t ask for permission.
Basically, these are files you don’t want on your device. These files are capable of causing harm to your device and exposing data. Malware is like a mosquito— you don’t want them to be there, and when they’re there, they cause havoc.
Be careful though, there are so many different kinds of malware. Viruses, Trojan Horses, and Worms are just a few.
- Trojan Horses: As the name indicates, trojan horse malware basically tricks the user. It’s malware that puts on a disguise, and once the user falls for the bait, the damage it can do varies.
- Viruses: This is a kind of malware that is brought onto someone’s device without their knowledge. Once on the device, it performs corrupts how one’s device works.
- Worms: This is malware that copies and pastes itself from device to device. Essentially a variant of a Trojan Horse.
These are simply a software’s “weak spot.” For example, let’s say two people are in a boxing rink– one man goes down, and the attacker will then hit the man down in the place with the most injury to win the match. This is essentially what vulnerability is. The weakness (most injured spot) in the software acts as a loophole for attackers to go through.
- Once attackers get past this loophole, they gain access to devices and take actions on your behalf.
How Can One Stay Safe From Cyber Attacks?
The best way to stay safe? Reduce vulnerability!!
Vulnerability can be reduced by:
- Keep software up to date. The more updated the software on your device, the less “weak spots” the attacker has to break in.
- Have reputable anti-virus software installed. Software to protect against malicious threats.
- Create strong passwords.
- Enable multi-factor authentication, MFA- MFA consists of processes used to validate one’s identity. Think about it, if someone only has one obstacle in your way vs. a route where someone else has 5-10 obstacles in your way, you’re going to lean towards the route with the least obstacles. That’s the same path attackers would lean towards. So, having MFA would make it more difficult for the attacker.
- Install a firewall– firewalls create a wall between unprotected vs. protected networks. They operate like a traffic guard- regulating what goes in and out.
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