Thursday, August 16, 2018
Last Updated August 15, 2018 07:50 PM MDT
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CyberCrime Glossary

  • back door — a vulnerability intentionally left in the security of a computer system or its software by its designers
  • biometrics — the use of a computer user’s unique physical characteristics — such as fingerprints, voice, and retina — to identify that user
  • black hat — a term used to describe a hacker who has the intention of causing damage or stealing information
  • bypass — a flaw in a security device
  • ciphertext — data that has been encrypted
  • Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) — an organization that collects and distributes information about security breaches
  • countermeasure — any action or device that reduces a computer system’s vulnerability
  • cracker — a term sometimes used to refer to a hacker who breaks into a system with the intent of causing damage or stealing data
  • cracking — the process of trying to overcome a security measure
  • cryptography — protecting information or hiding its meaning by converting it into a secret code before sending it out over a public network
  • crypto keys — the algorithms used to encrypt and decrypt messages
  • cybercrime — crime related to technology, computers, and the Internet
  • decrypt — the process of converting encrypted information back into normal, understandable text
  • denial of service (DoS) — an attack that causes the targeted system to be unable to fulfill its intended function
  • digital signature — an electronic equivalent of a signature
  • domain name — the textual name assigned to a host on the Internet
  • dumpster diving — looking through trash for access codes or other sensitive information
  • email — an application that allows the sending of messages between computer users via a network
  • encryption — the process of protecting information or hiding its meaning by converting it into a code
  • firewall — a device designed to enforce the boundary between two or more networks, limiting access
  • hacker — a term sometimes used to describe a person who pursues knowledge of computer and security systems for its own sake; sometimes used to describe a person who breaks into computer systems for the purpose of stealing or destroying data
  • hacking — original term referred to learning programming languages and computer systems; now associated with the process of bypassing the security systems on a computer system or network
  • high risk application — a computer application that, when opened, can cause the user to become vulnerable to a security breach
  • hijacking — the process of taking over a live connection between two users so that the attacker can masquerade as one of the users
  • host — a computer system that resides on a network and can independently communicate with other systems on the network
  • Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) — the language in which most web pages are written
  • information security — a system of procedures and policies designed to protect and control information
  • Internet — a computer network that uses the Internet protocol family
  • Internet Relay Chat (IRC) — a large, multiple-user, live chat facility
  • Internet service provider (ISP) — any company that provides users with access to the Internet
  • intranet — a private network used within a company or organization that is not connected to the Internet
  • intrusion detection — techniques designed to detect breaches into a computer system or network
  • IP spoofing — an attack where the attacker disguises himself or herself as another user by means of a false IP network address
  • keystroke monitoring — the process of recording every character typed by a computer user on a keyboard
  • leapfrog attack — using a password or user ID obtained in one attack to commit another attack
  • letterbomb — an email containing live data intended to cause damage to the recipient’s computer
  • malicious code — any code that is intentionally included in software or hardware for an unauthorized purpose
  • one-time password — a password that can be used only once, usually randomly generated by special software
  • packet — a discrete block of data sent over a network
  • packet sniffer — a device or program that monitors the data traveling over a network by inspecting discrete packets
  • password — a data string used to verify the identity of a user
  • password sniffing — the process of examining data traffic for the purpose of finding passwords to use later in masquerading attacks
  • pen register — a device that records the telephone numbers of calls received by a particular telephone
  • phracker — a person who combines phone phreaking with computer hacking
  • phreaker — a person who hacks telephone systems, usually for the purpose of making free phone calls
  • piggyback — gaining unauthorized access to a computer system via another user’s legitimate connection
  • piracy — the act of illegally copying software, music, or movies that are copyright-protected
  • Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) — a freeware program designed to encrypt email
  • probe — an effort to gather information about a computer or its users for the purpose of gaining unauthorized access later
  • risk assessment — the process of studying the vulnerabilities, threats to, and likelihood of attacks on a computer system or network
  • smart card — an access card that contains encoded information used to identify the user
  • sniffer — a program designed to capture information across a computer network
  • social engineering — term often used to describe the techniques virus writers and hackers utilize to trick computer users into revealing information or activating viruses
  • spam — unsolicited commercial email
  • spoofing — the process of disguising one computer user as another
  • trap and trace device — a device used to record the telephone numbers dialed by a specific telephone
  • Trojan horse — an apparently innocuous program that contains code designed to surreptitiously access information or computer systems without the user’s knowledge
  • virus — a computer program designed to make copies of itself and spread itself from one machine to another without the help of the user
  • war dialer — software designed to detect dial-in access to computer systems
  • warez — slang for pirated software
  • white hat — a hacker whose intentions are not criminal or malicious
  • wiretapping — the interception of electronic communications in order to access information
  • worm — a computer program that copies itself across a network

Posted on November 30, 2001 on the,23008,3363041,00.html web site.

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