Security Risks

Learn about the types of information exposure risks and explore the factors that determine which security mechanisms should be used.

Types of attack

We’ll now consider the types of risk to which information is typically exposed. Risks to information can be assessed by identifying different types of possible attacks that can be attempted. These attacks are often classified by the type of action that an attacker is able to perform.

Passive attacks

The main type of passive attack is unauthorized access to data. This is a passive process in the sense that the data and the processes being conducted on that data remain unaffected by the attack.

Note: A passive attack is often likened to ‘stealing’ information. However, unlike stealing physical goods, in most cases, theft of data still leaves the owner in possession of that data. As a result, information theft may go unnoticed by the owner. Indeed, it may even be undetectable.

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