7 Ghosts of Cybersecurity Awareness Month

October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month, also know as Spooky Season.

It’s more fun to enjoy the fake monsters of Halloween than the real ones lurking on the internet. But BEWARE! The real ones could change your life in an instant.

Visit and like our Facebook page for daily tips throughout October.

In the meantime, with a Halloween spin, here’s what to look out for:

  1. Social Engineering: Social engineering is the manipulation of people in order to get access to confidential information. It’s been used for centuries but it has gotten even more effective in the digital world. Examples include sending an email disguised as your friend or a trusted source, baiting you with free goods, and catfishing you into a fake romance. Once the personal information is obtained, the social engineer can then sell it or use it to line their own pockets.

    Think of them as shapeshifters who change their form in order to get what they want out of you.  
  2. Phishing: Phishing is another way to attack. Cybercriminals send an email or text message that seems safe, but once clicked it prompts you to enter login credentials or install malware.

    Imagine someone installing a listening device into your home by packaging it in a box from Amazon. Sounds a lot scarier now, doesn’t it? 
  3. Malware: Malware is any type of intrusive software designed to damage computers. There are many kinds, but malware is the umbrella term. Malware is a lot like another M-word: monster.

    There are many different types of monsters, but in the end, they are all monsters. 
  1. Viruses: Viruses are often attached to a file sent to you by a cybercriminal. These malicious chunks of code spread from device to device, damaging your software and stealing your data.

    Think about it this way: how much scarier would biological viruses be if they could record your thoughts and give them to someone else? 
  1. Keylogger: This spyware is extremely dangerous. Keyloggers allow hackers to read your keystrokes on your keyboard. This could reveal usernames, passwords, bank information, and other personal data.

    It’s like if there was someone learning all your personal secrets by reading through your texts and emails. Just the idea of it sends shivers right down your spine.  
  1. Ransomware: This code-based demon infects your computer by encrypting the data stored on the device and forces the owner to pay a ransom to get it back. These types of attacks occur on businesses and personal computers.

    Ransomware is like a demon possessing your friend and forcing you to give up your soul in order to get them back. 
  1. The Dark Web: The Dark Web isn’t something that infects your computer, but it is definitely something that should scare you. The Internet we use is only the tip of the iceberg, with the Deep and Dark Web taking up the rest. This shadowy hive of villains and ne’er-do-wells is where many attacks are launched from and where a lot of the stolen data is sold.

    There isn’t a good enough spooky metaphor for this one because the Dark Web is terrifying enough on its own.

There they are! Seven terrifying digital ghouls that haunt you for weeks to come. Visit and like our Facebook page to get some tips to avoid these threats!