I/T Definition: Malware

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Malware – Malware is short for Malicious Software.  Malware is any type of software that is designed to damage data or systems, to steal data, or to take control of the computer.

I/T Definition: Phishing

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Phishing – Malicious emails disguised as work-related email, business/financial email, or other types of emails designed to entice the user to enter in personal information, network, or banking account information.  This information will be secretly sent to the attacker who will use it to steal the user’s identity and their money or to access the state network using the user’s network log-in information to steal data.

I/T Definition: Web Server Attacks

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Web Server attacks – Attacks against the servers that connect the state network to the Internet as well as servers that host (store and run) websites.  These attacks can be to access data that is not meant to be accessible through the websites.  They can also be meant to prevent users from accessing the websites or the servers.

I/T Definition: Security Activity

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Security Activity – activity meant to enhance and maintain a high level of security.  This includes scanning network and email communications with sources and destinations that are outside of the state network.  It also includes installing upgraded security software and hardware including: anti-virus software, firewalls, content-filtering software, and intrusion detection software.

I/T Definition: Social Engineering

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Social Engineering – manipulating individuals to provide confidential information, perform actions or allowing access to secured locations.  Purposely “conning” individuals for the purpose of obtaining information or access to allow for nefarious cyber activities. The tendency of our culture in South Dakota is to be helpful and thus makes us very vulnerable to being socially engineered.

I/T Definition: Botnet

Botnet – multiple computers which are infected by malware and have come under the control of an attacker.
The malware used by botnets can infect your computer, turning it into a “bot” or “zombie,” meaning your computer can become part of the botnet and help criminals do their dirty work. Botnets are used to distribute spam or phishing emails and to conduct attacks against non-infected computers.