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Cyber ​​attacks: what are the most common and how to defend yourself?

Cybersecurity is becoming an increasingly important issue. Do you know what the most common cyber attacks are and how you can defend yourself?

In a world that has become increasingly digitalised Cyber ​​attacks have increased exponentially to companies and individuals. These attacks very often aim to obtain sensitive information, such as personal and financial data, access credentials for various accounts (private and corporate), data relating to credit or debit cards, etc.

Exist various types of cyber attacks among which we mainly remember phishing, brute force attacks on passwords, malware and ransomware. Let’s try to understand what it is and with what means it is possible to defend ourselves.

Cyber ​​attacks: what are the most common and how to defend yourself?

Most common cyber attacks

Il phishing

Phishing is one of the most well-known and widespread cyber attacks. In many cases this type of attack is carried out using the email channel, although it can be perpetrated by other means. Very often it is an email that appears to come from a safe and reliable organisation, such as a bank, an insurance company, the post office, etc. and that warns you that there are problems relating to your account, problems whose resolution requires you to click on a link by entering your login credentials. If you fall for the scam, your data is stolen by cybercriminals. In addition to data theft, accessing the scam site may open the door to the installation of malware, viruses or Trojan horses on your device.

The most effective means of defense against phishing are training and awareness (computer education): banks or other organizations never ask you to click on links by email by entering your credentials or credit card details. Many messages are written in a grammatically incorrect way and this should make the user suspicious. There are also some email “filtering” tools that can help detect some phishing emails, but the best weapon remains so-called computer education.

Brute force attacks

These are cyber attacks that they exploit algorithms and encryption techniques to try to steal passwords and other access credentials to user accounts (e-commerce sites, social networks, Internet Banking, etc.). These are methods that can take a long time to be successful because thousands of combinations of numbers, letters, special characters, etc. must be tried. However, very sophisticated software exists for this purpose.

The best means to protect yourself are to use password robuste, that is, rather complex, and use a password manager, a software useful both for memorizing, automatically inserting and generating passwords in complete security, and for archiving other sensitive data. Furthermore, this type of software also reports weak passwords set on various accounts, sends a notification when the user’s data is in danger (violation of one of the websites used) and synchronizes the login information on all the various devices used.

I malware

Malware is a generic term that indicates software such as viruses, worms, Trojans, etc. which, once installed on computers, mobile devices and corporate networks, steal personal data, spy on users and/or damage infected systems.

The most suitable means to defend yourself from these types of malicious software are installations of antivirus and anti-malware programs. They are IT solutions capable of detecting, blocking and removing most malicious software. Their constant updating is fundamental in this regard.

I ransomware

Ransomware is quite insidious malware. They work by taking control of the user’s computer and carry out data encryptionafter which a ransom is demanded to restore the normal functioning of the hacked device which can no longer be used. Very often after an attack of this kind, payment of the ransom in bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies is requested. The most suitable means of defense are the use of good antivirus software and, above all, regular system backups (for this purpose there are specific software that automates the procedure allowing the system to be restored if it is possibly hacked).

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