August 6, 2015
A zero-day attack can be defined as an attempt to exploit unpatched software vulnerabilities before it becomes known to the vendor or user. Cybercriminals can initiate this attack with an aim of downloading malware, phishing software or any other code and use it for malicious purposes. As a zero-day attack involves exploiting an unknown flaw in the software, it often creates a ‘vulnerability window’, which refers to the time elapsed between the identification of the exploit and the installation of patch to fix it.
Types Of Zero-Day Attacks
Cyber criminals may launch a zero-day attack in any of the following ways:
- Websites: If you have installed flawed software in your system and you visit a malware infected website, the hackers get an easy opportunity to manipulate the vulnerability. The security fault can be present either in your browser files or computer.
- Inferior Software: Zero-day attacks can also misuse poorly designed software. These types of applications usually consist of different vulnerabilities that can be easily manipulated for malicious use. Through zero-day attacks, hackers may exploit the common file types in order to steal confidential data or damage the system altogether.
- Emails: The attack can also be initiated when a user clicks on a malware infected email attachment. Once the file is downloaded, the bug can exploit any security flaws either in the email software or the computer system.
Tips To Prevent Zero-Day Attacks
- Internet browsers and operating systems are most significant trajectories of zero-day attacks. You should frequently update your browser and implement the maximum security settings possible. You can either set your browser to download and install updates automatically or do so manually as soon as they are officially released.
- Always stay alert for any updates or security patches announced for the software installed on your system.
- If you use an open Wi-Fi network, you are at a higher risk for zero-day attacks. As the information shared over these connections is not properly encrypted, your device may be exposed to various security threats. Make sure you do not download any files or share sensitive information over such networks.
- Do perform a regular scan of your system for viruses, malware and other faulty software. You should also clear your browsers cache and cookies from time to time. Changing passwords for all your online accounts, such as email ids, net banking, social media, etc., can also help to prevent against zero-day attacks.
We, at Centex Technologies, provide complete cybersecurity solutions in Central Texas. For more information, you can call us at (855) 375 – 9654.