How many times have we not heard that a company, web platform or team has been attacked by cybercriminals? Surely a lot. This is because an attacker managed to breach the system and steal your data. Commonly the possibilities they have to carry out this crime is taking advantage of a weakness in it.
These criminals often find this very easy, as they use these small errors to infiltrate, their preferred tool being the famous Exploits. But what are they really? It is basically a program or code that takes advantage of a security hole.
As you see this term relates to threats and attacks, reason why we must know very well the consequences that it can generate and how we can avoid them to protect our backs. In this article below we will give you all the details you need, since your security is important to us.
What are exploits and what are they for in computing?
This word has English origin and means to exploit or take advantage of; In computing it has a similar meaning, but nevertheless, we are talking about a piece of software that uses an insufficiency to have an unforeseen behavior within an information system.
These tools, as we have already mentioned, are very useful for cybercriminals, since they can use vulnerabilities in very popular programs. The same are able to get administrator permissions or being able to take control and evade security measures to generate an infection.
If we imagine this in another context, we could represent the system as the model of a lock, where if it has a defect in its design, it would allow us to create keys (exploits), to open it and therefore access what it is trying to protect.
The purpose of this is to destroy or disable the system to whom the attack is carried out, when their measures are violated to carry out activities that are beneficial to third parties.
How does an exploit work to detect vulnerabilities in our computer equipment?
Mainly we must bear in mind that this can reach our computers in different ways, because in general They are not only actions generated by hackers, if not also by security experts, which is why they know very well what they do.
Sometimes this can come from its own consequences, being the fact that we open emails of suspicious origin, click on malicious links, enter dangerous websites, etc. Other times it may come with an ad harmless thrown on a page.
As the software is created and developed by us humans, it is very common that these can have errors in the codes; these are usually called bugs. That is why when a mistake or vulnerability is found in an email software, when making a request to its server, for example, a hacker could create a file to exploit such a bug and access user information with ease.
When we talk about computer viruses We associate it directly with all types of malicious software, but we must know that today these are not very dangerous pieces of threats that can be found on the Internet.
Currently we can find different terms that seem to be familiar, as in the case of exploits and malware, but it should be clear that these expressions have different functions.
A malware is a malicious code, which can generate any type of problem in our computers to cause damage and take control of its operations. It is made up of Trojans, ransomware or worms. Although it is not intended to damage your computer hardware, it does steal, erase and encrypt your data.
For its part, exploits are programs that are intended to exploit the flaws that exist; As we have already said, they take advantage of design or programming errors in a certain system to enter it.
As we can see, if there are differences between one and the other, although both can be used to commit any kind of inappropriate act. The exploit alone is not malicious, criminals use it as an extra component within their malicious code to gain illegal income. Likewise, many malware use exploits to achieve their goal and take control of the system.
What are the types of exploits that exist and how are they different?
There are several types of exploits, each of them is important for you to know about, since These are based on the different forms of access that are achieved and according to the objective of the attacker.
Among them the following are distinguished:
- Remote exploit: It is one where it is not necessary for the attacker to be physically in front of the computer that wants to do the damage. Which means that you can run it from any type of local network where you are connected, you can even do it from an Internet connection.
- Local exploit: It is done when the attacker is in front of the computer he wants to attack. Although in itself it is not necessary that you be physically present, but you can also do it remotely.
- Client exploit: In this, the attacker must be in front of the computer physically. At present it is one of the most common, because a malicious attachment can be sent through an email, and once it is downloaded it can be executed.
Tips to protect yourself from exploits and avoid cyber attacks
Once you have explained what this program means, what its types are and how they work, you can then apply certain options and tips to prevent it from affecting the development of your operating system.
Notably The fact of installing a tool that tells you when there is any type of threat is very important, as this will help the equipment to stay in perfect condition.
Take note of these tips that we offer you:
Keep all our applications and systems updated
As we have said, these take advantage of the security holes in our computer, that is why we must close them immediately. For this reason keeping our entire system and what it contains updated to the latest versions is beneficial, this to prevent it from being exploited by attackers.
The updates not only incorporate improvements in the functionalities but also include corrections that serve to close possible holes.
To make sure they are up to date and not miss an update, we can use an administrator to keep our security in place by making automatic adjustments.
Reduce any type of exploit effect that can be executed without our permission
Sometimes those who create the applications do not make updates to solve any type of problem that one has, which is why different types of instruments are used to avoid any type of virus that could damage the operating system and thus obtain an adequate response.
Having a solution at hand is essential to get and block any type of threat that does not allow any vulnerability in a file.
Install an antivirus
Nowadays it is essential to install a good antivirus that is constantly and automatically updated, this with the intention that your computer has the security it needs. Keep in mind that you must use one that is capable of detecting and blocking exploits; for our part we recommend ESET Smart Security, but if you want to see other options you can enter the following link to know the best antivirus.
Install backup measures
You will always install programs that provide the necessary security to your computer, because hackers can use these expiations in order to enter your computer whenever they want.
Be careful with attachments
Every time you enter your email and need to open an attachment It is essential that you verify that it does not come from any source with risk. This is because you can unconsciously install any type of malicious file that could harm your computer.
If you have any questions, leave them in the comments, we will answer you as soon as possible, and it will also be of great help to more members of the community. Thank you! 😉