With the curtains drawing down on 2014, we enter into 2015 with advancements in many fields. But one such negative aspect which kept growing is the threat to cyber security. Shockingly, many of those who are currently using computers aren’t even aware about this term.
But the situation is now alarming. Simply, if you don’t take steps to keep your computer safe your computer and you can be subject to fraudulent activity on the Internet. All these activities relate to cases in which hackers, enter computers through trickery and then use it for malicious purposes. It can happen anytime and to anyone on a computer without protection.
Chances are that you may receive a deceptive e-mail stating about an “urgent matter” concerning your Facebook account or Google account. They could even be looking for personal information present in your computer (say credit card numbers or login information, private accounts) which they can use to gain monetary benefits or for simply exploiting your registered services.
Not just these, but they may get after your computer resources like your Internet connection, to increase bandwidth and infect other computers. Because the mantra is, the larger the number of computers behind which a hacker hides, the tougher is to find him. Thus, hiding their true location on the web means that initiating attacks without getting caught is a lot easier.
Anyways, there are many different threats to the security of your computer because there are many different ways a hacker can steal your information or infect your computer. Once entered the computer, the threat usually shows very few symptoms so they can survive undetected for a longer period, during which they strengthen themselves, spreading to different locations within the computer.
We have compiled a list of the different types of threats along with some recommended steps you can take to reduce these threats, using information from Symantec, a world leader in software contravention that helps customers protect their information, infrastructure and interactions.
Computer Threat # 1: [Vulnerabilities]
Vulnerabilities are simply the weaknesses which are developed in your computer mostly due to software. Any software, if not designed perfectly often contains some loopholes that are nothing but weaknesses to the overall security system of your computer. The other way round, vulnerabilities may also result due to inadequate computer settings.
Once a hacker happens to know of such vulnerabilities that are within your computer, he then plans and exploits your computer through these loopholes causing severe damage. Here, if the vulnerabilities are a resultant of faulty software design, companies announce vulnerabilities once they get to know of them and work towards speedy recovery of such bad sectors using patches or software upgrades.
Learn About The Various Vulnerabilities In Wi-Fi Networks here.
Computer Threat # 2: [Spyware]
Spyware is the malicious content downloaded from web pages, e-mail messages, and instant messaging applications mostly without the consent of the user. Most spyware often remains calm and tries to go unnoticed in the first few weeks, thus, hiding whatever it does in the computer from the user.
Spyware is mostly used by companies and other websites to track user behavior on the internet. The information of whether you are more of a sports loving person or online shopping person can be identified based on the sums of data collected by these spyware.
Learn A Lot More About Spyware here.
Computer Threat # 3: [Spam]
In a nutshell, spam is the e-version of junk mail. Spamming from a particular computer means sending unwanted messages, that too repeatedly, to a large number of recipients. Spamming can seriously be considered as a security threat.
This is because through spamming e-mails containing trojans, viruses or spyware can be distributed over large group of computers and thus there is sensitive personal information at stake.
Computer Threat # 4: [Malware]
Malware is the combination of all viruses and trojans. Simply anything malicious on your computer can be termed as a malware (i.e. malicious + software = malware).
Destructive malware uses popular communication tools to spread, including worms sent through e-mails and instant messages, trojans entering through web pages and downloaded, infected direct connections between users. The malware will seek to exploit the vulnerabilities by entering in a quiet and simple way.
Learn More About What is Malware and How To Detect Malware –here
Computer Threat # 5: [Phishing]
Phishing is essentially an online fraud, and phishers are nothing more than technological scammers. They use spam, phishing web pages, emails and instant messages to target people. Then may then try to make people disclose sensitive information such as bank account information, credit card, or access to personal accounts.
Here’s How To Stay Protected:
• Keep updated software patches and security.
• Configure the security settings of the operating system, browser and security software.
• Installing a security solution such as AVG Internet Security to block threats that primarily focus on vulnerabilities.
• Do not accept or open dialogs suspected to contain errors within the browser.
• Spyware may enter your computer as part of a “free offer” – do not accept free deals.
• Always read carefully the ‘End User License Agreement’ when installing. Install and then be quick to cancel if any other “programs” than what you want are being installed as a part of the desired program.
• Scan your hard drive / memory for viruses regularly. It is much better if you have scheduled a scan at regular intervals.
• Anti-spyware programs like Ad Aware and / or SpybotSD can really help you in preventing any spyware intrusions. So, start using one.