What is an exploit?

What does a security exploit do?

Most cyberattacks involve criminals exploiting some sort of security weakness. The weakness in the system can be a bug, a glitch orunknown simply a design vulnerability.

The word exploit is a way of abusing a software bug to bypass one or more security protections that are in place. Software bugs that can be exploited in this way are known as vulnerabilities. An exploit is the use of software, data, or commands to “exploit” a weakness in a computer system or program to carry out some form of malicious intent, such as a denial-of-service attack, Trojan horses, worms or viruses.

Some software crashes can be orchestrated and controlled so that they do something dangerous, before the operating system can intervene and protect you.When attackers outside your network exploit a vulnerability of this sort, they often do so by tricking one of the applications you are using, such as your browser or word processor, into running a program or program fragment that was sent in from outside.

Types Of Exploits

A remote exploit exploits the security vulnerability without ever having prior access to the system. A local exploit needs prior access to the vulnerable system and usually involves increasing the privileges of the user account running the exploit. Those who utilize exploits often use social engineering to gain critical information needed to access the system. A zero-day exploit is one that the softwar’s creator has not yet discovered.

Web browsers and media players are often targets by hackers since they both have access to system information and can download files from the internet.

How to prevent an exploit

images-1Reputable vendors patch exploitable vulnerabilities as soon as they can. Many vulnerabilities never turn into zero-days because they are discovered responsibly through the vendor’s own research, or programs, and patched before the crooks find them out. Patches (or “fixes”) are intended to remedy these vulnerabilities as soon as they are revealed and are often distributed in software updates. It is vital to keep your software up-to-date in order to make sure that all known vulnerabilities patched.

Use security software that blocks exploits proactively.To prevent losing data because of an attack taking advantage of an exploit,it is a good idea to keep regular backups of your data saved on your computer.

Many vulnerabilities require an attacker to trigger a series of suspicious operations to line things up before they can be exploited. can detect, report and block these precursor operations and prevent exploits altogether.