Security Threats

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  • Created by: Sana Khan
  • Created on: 06-05-14 09:54


A hacker is a person who breaks codes and passwords to gain unauthorised entry to computer systems.

They may use;

Viruses - A program or piece of code that is loaded onto your computer without your knowledge and runs against your wishes.

Trojans - A destructive program that acts as a non-threatening application. Trojan horses do not replicate themselves but they can be just as destructive.

Worms - A program or algorithim that replicates itself over a computer network and performs malicious actions such as using up a computer's resources and possibly shutting the system down

Phishing - The act of sending an email to a user falsely claiming to be a legitimate enterprise in an attempt to scam them and get information that could be used for identity theft

Hacking and computer fraud are crimes punishable by law and to deal with these crimes, ‘The Computer Misuse Act’ was introduced in 1990.

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Malicious software - Viruses

A computer virus is a software program designed to replicate itself over and over again and attach itself to other programs

The most common ways of getting a computer virus are:

•Email attachments

•Infected web pages

•Downloading a file from a web page

Viruses can be prevented by taking precautions:

•Using anti-virus software which alerts the user when it recognises a virus pattern and gives the option or removing the virus or putting it under quarantine.

•Scanning all incoming emails

•Not opening attachments from people you don’t know

•Not using software that has been copied

The computer misuse act of 1990 states that anyone caught distributing viruses faces an unlimited fine and up to a five year prison sentence.

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The single biggest cause of data loss or accidental damage to data is from employees or data users.


Not saving work – a system may crash while you are working Saving over a file by accident Deleting a file by accident Not saving files with sensible names so they cant be found when needed

Data theft

Industrial espionage – an employee may be tempted to steal data as they have been offered money by another company to get hold of it.

Data damage

An employee may hold a grudge against their employer and so may intentionally damage company data and files to get revenge.

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