What are Network Security Threats?

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While your mother may have told you never to talk to strangers, the same advice is needed when dealing with the virtual world online. You know that you shouldn’t share your bank details with anyone, yet, are you sure that the website you are logging in is actually your bank’s website and not some cybercriminal’s creation? The media typically covers at least one big cyber-security story a week. However, many more go unnoticed. This is a major problem for any organization that has valuable information to protect – especially those companies that are involved in the world of data events (see related concepts like what is event data guide?). The World-Wide-Web is increasingly becoming a dangerous place and network threats have become a daily source of a headache to internet users and businesses and everyone needs to be extra vigilant online.

Though you might have invested in the next generation of defenses against malware, there are still numerous unknown network security threats lurking behind your screen. You need to be aware of all these threats to stay safe online. Here’s a brief summary of some of these threats:


This stands for malicious software and refers to a variety of hostile and intrusive software or program code.

Computer viruses

These viruses can corrupt files, steal data or even delete data – sometimes to the extent of erasing everything on the hard drive. A virus can also use your email to spread itself to your online contacts’ computers.

Trojan horse

You can accidentally download this software by clicking on some innocent-looking application. Once it gains access to your computer, a Trojan horse can do almost anything, right from stealing your passwords by logging keystrokes, down to hijacking your webcam function and following your every movement.

Malicious spyware

This refers to Trojan applications that are created by cyber criminals for spying on people. An example is the keylogger software marketed to parents or businesses that want to keep tabs on their kids or employees. The software records every keystroke of the victim and then sends it back to the hacker.

Computer Worm

This software program replicates very fast and can transfer from one computer to another without human help. It can spread to all your contacts and to your contact’s contact list too.

Rogue security software

This rogue software entices people to click onto it for installing or updating your security. They appear as pop-up windows and actually download malicious software onto your device.


This refers to a group of computers connected online and compromised by cybercriminals using a computer virus or Trojan horse. The Botnet is controlled by a ‘Bot Master’ who can spread spam emails or cause a DoS attack, leading to web servers crashing due to the overload of access requests.


This refers to sending unwanted messages from your email inbox.


These are fraudulent attempts by cybercriminals to collect vital personal information while posing as legitimate sources.