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Targeted Vs. Untargeted Cyber Attacks

With the rapid advancement in technology and the openness of the Internet came about increasingly sophisticated cyber-criminal activity. Understanding the difference between the various common attacks is the first step to knowing how to better protect your company. As leading providers in security services in Malta, Signal 8 Security differentiates between the two types of cyber attacks: targeted and untargeted.


Untargeted attacks

The majority of intentional cyber attacks are untargeted. The intent to cause damage to people’s software is a driving force behind these attacks, but without a particular individual or business being targeted. Rather, the attackers’ main aim is to affect as many devices or users as possible. This is done indiscriminately; in other words, it doesn’t matter who the victims are. To achieve this, cyber criminals take advantage of the openness of the Internet. For instance, when you click on an ad that downloads something to your computer, there’s a good chance that there is some form of untargeted cyberthreat occurring.


Untargeted attacks can take the form of:

Malware – which includes worms, computer viruses, trojan horses, spyware and adware.
Phishing – sending emails to large numbers of people in order to fool them by redirecting them to an identical copy of a site they frequent, such as Facebook.
Ransomware – as the name suggests, this is a type of malicious software designed to block access to a system until a sum of money is paid.
Scanning – attacking wide swathes of the Internet at random.


Targeted attacks

What do corporate giants Sony and Yahoo have in common? They’ve both fallen victim to targeted types of cyber attacks. Such attacks can be considered one of the biggest cyber threats to an organisation in today’s internet-connected landscape. It is the worst-case scenario for any company, regardless of size, as not only does the company lose reputation, it could cost millions in damages.


This type of attack, as the name implies, refers to when the cyber criminals have a specific target in mind, and their aim is to attack and infiltrate a critical infrastructure system in order to steal information from their servers. Indeed, advanced cyber-attacks can now nest inside a network for more than 200 days on average before discovery, and by then, thousands of private customer records and data could have been gathered and stolen.


The Internet can be a tricky world, a place which can create a lot of vulnerability, which is why it’s necessary to take precautions against untargeted attacks, as well as make your business unattractive to cyber criminals by maintaining a strong cybersecurity network.


Let Signal 8 Security Services Malta do the work for you!

Whether you own a start-up or are an established company, we can help ensure your business’ and clients’ critical data is kept safe against all types of cyber attacks. Over the years, we at Signal 8 have earned a reputable name within the sector of security in Malta. Contact usfor more information on how we can help!


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