The Most Common Types of Attacks on Computer Networks

Every organization in existence today owns multiple gadgets, smartphones, laptops and desktop PCs, and it has become essential to develop a network between all such devices to allow for seamless data sharing.

Indeed, with the inception of technologies such as Google ChromeCast, MiraCast, and Wi-Fi direct, there is absolutely no gadget which you cannot wirelessly connect to all other devices. Of course, this amazing feat of science comes with a huge drawback; networks are prone to attacks from hackers, viruses, and bots, so you must steer clear from these.

Here are the most common network attack mechanisms that you should be aware of.

Eavesdropping
Do you think whatever you are surfing is between you and your computer? Well, you may be wrong!
Networks, mostly, use “clear-text” format codes to communicate, which means that they are mostly unsecure. For someone who knows the data path your network uses, this is the best possible opportunity to sneak in and get a snoop of all your activities.
This is a very dangerous phenomenon, one which enterprise leaders ensure their computer networks are protected against.

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Data Modification
Though it is very difficult, yet possible, to modify your data while it resides in your computer, professional hackers can also modify your data while you download/transmit it through your computer.

This is possible because the data your send/receive through your computer is transformed into packets, and anyone who gains access to your networks data path can gain access to your data packets. Such hackers will then aim to modify the data packets you are sending/receiving in order to disrupt your operations.

Again, large-scale organizations are the biggest targets hackers go after, as changing just one number in their data record can make them lose millions.

Identity Spoofing
As the name of this threat suggests, hackers using this mean will aim to disguise their machines as one of the organizations, by adopting an already used IP. Doing so grants instant and seamless access to the hacker of all the organization’s network, hence all the confidential files.

tcp-ipHackers who become successful using this mean of penetration are automatically granted the power to modify, retrieve, or delete your data. The following attacks on other computers in the network can also be carried out by the same hacker:

1)    Password-based attacks
Once a hacker has gained access to the network by posing as a user, he can also gain access to the passwords of different users on the network using the ‘host’ file which is a part of all Windows and Mac computers. This sort of absolute access will allow the attacker to manipulate the entire network structure, and he may be able to destroy the entire network with such an attack.

2)    Denial-of-Service attack
As the name suggest, such an attack will make it impossible for the user to control his/her machine, or some aspects of it. The denial-of-service attack can prevent access from data files, certain computer features, internet access, or network access. It can also flood the entire network with useless information in an attempt to shut it down by overloading it.

Walt Smith

Walt is a writer and editor for GigleNetworks, a blog that discusses everything to do with networking technologies. He resides in sunny Florida with his wife and beautiful 2 children.

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