Seven Cybersecurity Terms You Need to Know

Cybersecurity is more important than ever. Criminals and hackers continue to cause issues for large and small businesses, along with the millions of private accounts that are breached every year. With personal and business data being stolen regularly, cybersecurity must always be a priority when you go online. 

This means having an understanding of some of the most important terms used when discussing online security. If you don’t know your firewall from your malware, this quick guide should get you up to date quickly. 

Take the time to learn these terms, and you will make it easier to identify exactly where you might be lacking in your cybersecurity setup. 

The Cloud

Cloud platforms are essential for modern businesses. Essentially, the Cloud is a collection of computers and storage facilities that handle large volumes of data and server requests. The benefits of cloud platforms are that they can be accessed from anywhere you like, and are reliant on their ability to remain cyber-secure.


A Virtual Private Network (VPN) makes it possible to browse online while staying anonymous. VPNs work by hiding your location and the trail of encrypting traffic that you normally leave everywhere that you visit without a VPN.


This is a software that has been specifically designed to cause harm. Malware can be used to attack individual computers or servers, or entire networks. Most people are aware of viruses, but many other malware types are used by hackers. 


This is the term used when a hacker manages to break through your security defenses and view your private files and data. If you are the victim of a data breach, then everything that you have stored is vulnerable to theft or exploitation.


These are a security wall that can keep out those with ill intent. Modern firewalls are increasingly sophisticated, and have been developed to act as the first and final line of defense for any computer system. Look at options like the tz400 wireless for the toughest form of cyber-defense possible.


This is a type of malware that stops you from accessing your own data or files. Hackers deploy ransomware and then demand payment before letting you regain control. Ransomware comes in a variety of forms, so it’s important that you keep updated on the latest cases.


If you get a message on social media, an email, or even a WhatsApp message with a link included, but you don’t recognize the sender, then it may be a phishing scam. These links will take you somewhere unsafe, often somewhere that automatically downloads malware to your system. Avoiding suspicious links is vital, but the rise of spear phishing (where messages are sent from people you know) makes this a growing challenge.

As cybersecurity becomes more essential, the terms used can become overwhelming very quickly. However, once you know the basics, you will find it much easier to keep up with new cybercrime trends and tactics. The more that you can learn about cybersecurity and the terms that are used, the easier it will be to recognize just where you are vulnerable. Knowledge in the digital age is more than just about power; knowledge is security.