Common Hacking Methods

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In 2023, Malware attacks went up 11% every quarter by October and the biggest leaps included threats to encryption and IoT devices. Since most cyber attacks are financially motivated, business owners are at high risk of being targeted. However, the good news is that businesses can take precautionary measures to keep their IT infrastructure safe from hackers.

According to a report from IBM, it takes approximately 277 days to identify a data breach. If business owners want to ensure proper data security, they need the right digital protection — beforehand — so it is easier to carry out damage control and detect when their system has been compromised.

One of the best ways to ensure proper protection is by entrusting your cybersecurity needs to a professional cybersecurity services provider that focuses on cybersecurity. Business owners should also educate themselves on common computer hacking methods their systems may be prone to, so proper security measures can be taken to prevent any harm from occurring.

10 Hacking Methods You Need To Know

Hackers are notorious for the amount of personal and financial harm they cause to individuals and businesses. However, just as cyber-attacks are on the rise — so is cybersecurity.
Business owners should keep an eye out for these most common attack vectors used by hackers, so they can take proper cybersecurity measures to keep their data safe.


1. Clickjacking

Clickjacking is a common hacking technique that works by tricking the user into clicking a malicious link. The user believes they are clicking an authentic element, but in reality, another function takes place giving the hacker control of their device. Clickjacking attacks are dangerous because they are difficult to detect and they can occur through any webpage that is not properly secured.

2. Keylogger

A keylogger attack is another type of hacking method through which hackers may record sensitive data from a small business. This hacking technique works by recording every keystroke in the compromised device.

The keylogger captures each keystroke on the keyboard, giving the hacker access to sensitive information. Keylogging is often what hackers do to find out someone’s password, credit card info, or personal identifying information.


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3. Virus or Trojan

Trojans and viruses are yet another type of hacking method that can be installed into the information technology system of small businesses. This dangerous software remains in the database and continues to send sensitive information to the hacker.

Trojans and viruses are notorious for locking files and spreading across entire IT networks. A popular type of virus that hackers use is called ransomware, which makes your data inaccessible until a sum of money is paid to the attackers.

4. Bait and Switch

The bait and switch hacking technique obtains system data by hijacking an authentic paid advertising space. Through bait and switch, users believe they are clicking an authentic ad, but the ad has been purchased by attackers and actually leads the user to a bad link. When users land on this malicious website, malware is downloaded into their system and the hacker gains access to their sensitive data.

5. Theft of Cookies

Every system maintains cookies in its web browsers to store personal data. Data such as usernames, passwords, and browsing history is saved through cookies. If the user browses a website that does not have a Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificate, then it is possible for hackers to send malicious software programs to their system and carry out session hijacking.

6. Fake Wireless Access Points (W.A.P)

Hackers can also access a device or system by impersonating a wireless access point (W.A.P). In this method, hackers create a false W.A.P and give it a trustworthy name (like “Starbucks”) so users are tricked into believing it is an authentic access point. Once the user mistakenly connects to the W.A.P, the hacker gains access to their personal information.

Common Hacking Methods

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7. Phishing

Hackers attack corporations in many ways, but phishing emails are definitely one of the most popular. According to a Verizon report, 82% of breaches involved a human element such as falling for a phishing email.

Phishing emails are essentially messages that are designed to appear as if they are from a popular and authentic brand when in reality, they trick the user to click a malicious website or attachment. Phishing emails generally work by alarming the user into action.

For instance, they may:

  • Urge the user to update their username and password because their account is compromised
  • Send links through personal contacts
  • Claim there is an issue with payment
  • Send a fake invoice
  • Offer free items
  • Ask for the confirmation of sensitive information

Any of these methods will give the hacker access to sensitive information.

8. Denial of Service or Distributed Denial of Service (DoS/DDoS)

The denial of service or DoS hacking technique requires the taking down of a site by overwhelming the server with data requests. Hackers achieve this by flooding the website with a significant amount of fake traffic so the server cannot process all the requests, and it essentially crashes.

Naturally, with so many fake requests coming in through this denial of service attack, the server is unable to process real requests and this leads to a significant loss of business and poor UX.

9. SQL Injections

Structured Query Language (SQL) is used across systems to perform essential data operations. Hackers can use SQL injections to manipulate the SQL code. By adding malicious code into the database, they can gain unauthorized access to otherwise protected personal information.



10. Watering Hole Attacks

A watering hole attack is another method hackers use to infect an organized targeted system so they can gain access to the network. The hacker first identifies a common but weak website used by the target. The low-security website is then infected with a malicious code which triggers a chain reaction when the victim visits the website.

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Protecting Your Business from These Common Hacking Methods

From clickjacking to DDoS attacks, the knowledge of how to hack into a computer is easily accessible online and in many scenarios, can be done without any extensive technological expertise All business owners need to make sure their systems are properly protected so they do not risk falling victim to attacks like social engineering and losing essential data.

Business owners should follow these safety measures to keep their IT systems as safe as possible from these varying types of hacks:

  • Refrain from opening unknown attachments or clicking on a link that is unknown
  • Ensure you only use strong passwords for all your financial and social media accounts
  • Always enforce multi-factor authentication across all your platforms.
  • Make sure your systems are secured by installing anti-virus software and advanced endpoint detection software to stop and respond to attacks
  • Have a comprehensive security awareness training program
  • Ensure all systems are are patched to the latest versions
  • Always check the email address of a sender before interacting with an email
  • Practice ethical hacking to detect and correct your system vulnerabilities
  • Hand your IT cybersecurity needs to a reliable managed service provider

If you run a small business, a hacker can wreak havoc on your IT systems and personal client data. You should make sure you exhaust every effort to enhance your cybersecurity so you don’t face system-critical technical issues and your business can continue to thrive

Get the Best Cybersecurity Against All Types of Hackers at Intellicomp Today

At Intellicomp, we offer professional IT managed services for your business. Our team of remote technicians are highly skilled at maintaining your networks and hardware infrastructure. We specialize in security and risk management and take the right measures to ensure your business data remains safe and secure.

Contact Intellicomp to learn more about our managed IT services.