Cyber security is the defense protocols put in place to protect electronic systems, services, networks, and devices from malicious attacks.

You may also know it as “Information Technology Security” or “Electronic Information Security.” But, Cybersecurity sounds much cooler and futuristic.

Cyber security is a vague term that can apply to many different contexts. Therefore, it is broken down into the following categories.

Types of Cyber Security

1. Network Security

Network security describes the practice of protecting computer networks from hackers and any other unwanted intruders. This can include targeted malicious attacks or just opportunistic attacks. Network security has become vital for governments, organizations, and businesses all over the world.

Without proper network security in place, large amounts of sensitive information can easily be stolen, replaced, or wiped. When you see stories in the news about government agencies or large corporations being hacked, it’s likely a failure of their network security.

2. Application Security

In our modern world, we rely on software and devices to do our everyday business. These are also under constant threat from hackers and digital criminals. If an application is compromised, it could allow a hacker to access vast amounts of confidential data.

Often, application security is the first stage of security before protecting any programs or devices.

3. Information Security

Data is king in modern business and governance. When anybody attempts to do anything online, they’re usually asked for pieces of information about themselves for security and marketing purposes.

All this data is highly useful for hackers and criminals. It can be used to target individuals, commit fraud, and even steal people’s identities. Protecting people’s data is of the utmost importance.

4. Operational Security

Once data is collected from individuals, there are systems and processes put in place which determine what to do with that data, including where it is stored. Operational security protects those systems and ensures they’re not manipulated.
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Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity

What happens when hackers target a large corporation, and huge amounts of data are lost within minutes? Disaster recovery and business continuity are the processes and policies put in place to decide on how to react to such an event.

This security type ensures that the operating systems and information are quickly returned to the same capacity before the events occurred. This allows a business to resume as normal despite the attack, allowing employees to continue with work and avoid any financial or operational loss.

End-User Education

End-user education is a vital part of cyber security. While external threats are often predictable and easy to deal with using the above security, the most unpredictable threat is people themselves. What happens if an employee within the organization introduces a virus to the system by accident?

End-use education seeks to teach users within an organization how to spot cyber threats, including suspicious emails, unsecured USB drives, and lots of other important lessons that help avoid internal cyber threats.

Why is Cyber Security Important?

We have never been more digitally connected as we’re today. All people, businesses, organizations, and governments depend on large-scale digital networks to function.

On an individual level, your computer holds essential information about your life—bank account details, ID information, passwords, etc. A breach of personal security could lead to identity theft, financial theft, extortion attempts, and less severe, but problematic, issues like loss of family photos or videos.

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On a corporate level, a breach of financial cyber security could lead to all manner of very serious issues. A disruption in operations could lead to downtime costing the business thousands and even millions of dollars.

If a governmental department were to experience a cyber attack, it could jeopardize the employees and the general public. Top secret information could be stolen and sold to other countries who would pay for the vital information on defense systems, exploring weak spots to use against them.

Critical infrastructure like hospitals, power plants, and financial services are also at risk. Disruption to any of them could lead to serious issues for the general public.

Cyber security is also crucial for learning. It makes our countries, businesses, and people more secure. Research helps us to find weak spots in our infrastructure and encourages better and more secure systems. The work behind financial cyber security makes everyone safer.

Common Types of Security Threats

Phishing

Phishing is the most common threat that people encounter when thinking about the question: what is cyber security? It is the practice of sending fraudulent emails that look like emails from reputable people or companies. For example, an email that resembles one from your bank.

A phishing email aims to steal sensitive data like bank account details, credit card numbers, or login information. The best way to defend against phishing scams is to educate people on what phishing emails look like including obvious red flags. For example, your bank is asking you for credit card details. Banks will never do this.

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Ransomware

Ransomware can come in the form of different types of malicious software. The idea is to block access to files or hold sensitive information in return for a ransom. The attackers will not release the block or return the information until the money is paid.

An example of a ransomware attack may be to block a company’s access to their server, which holds all their sensitive data and allows its employees to operate. There is no guarantee that the block will be lifted or information returned once the payment is made.

Malware

Malware is special software developed by cyber criminals that helps them gain access to unauthorized files or servers. Malware can also cause damage to a person’s computer or systems.

This is especially damaging to big companies that use extensive computer networks.

Social Engineering

Social engineering is a cunning trick that enables attackers to steal sensitive information from computer systems. They can then obtain monetary payments or gain access to confidential data.

Social engineering is often combined with one of the threats listed above, which helps attackers improve their chances of success. The victims are tricked more easily into opening email attachments, downloading malware, or trusting a malicious software piece.

Other Cyber Threats

Cyber threats are continually evolving. The above threats are only the most common threats, but many others exist, including:
  • SQL Injection
  • Man-in-the-Middle Attack
  • Denial of Service Attack
  • Romance Scams

For this reason, cybersecurity is imperative to any company or individual using a computer, electronic systems, networks, software, or devices.

What Can Be Done About Cyber Threats?

Thankfully, many cyber experts and cybersecurity companies dedicate their lives to protecting against these threats. What can you and your company do?
  • Keep your computers and software up to date at all times.
  • Use a quality anti-virus software
  • Use strong passwords and change frequently
  • Never open email attachments from unknown senders
  • Do not click links inside of email from unknown senders
  • Don’t use unsecured WiFi networks

For this reason, cybersecurity is imperative to any company or individual using a computer, electronic systems, networks, software, or devices.

Finally, if you’re a company, use the expert services of a cyber security company such as Triada Networks. These companies understand the ever-evolving cyber threats and actively work with your business to keep you protected at all times, and can assist you with computer security compliance.

Triada Networks is an IT company in New York, schedule a consultation today to speak to one of our qualified and professional members of staff about IT services NYC for your company.

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