As you already probably know there are a lot of different web attacks out there that you have to worry about. But what you might not know is that you can be attacked by different methods on the web. Most people tend to think that all attacks are some sort of virus that they have to worry about. They just think that the virus is done in several different ways. But that simply is not the case. There are different types of attacks all together that you have to worry about. And when you are looking for a security solution you have to make sure that you are defending all of these different types of attacks. if you do not then you will do nothing but leave yourself wide open to be exploited.
The type of attack that we are going to talk about in this article is the worm attack. This is an attack that still happens quite frequently but you do not hear that much about anymore. For some reason while you will hear all about a virus or a Trojan you just will not hear that much about worms that attack systems. I think a good reason why you do not hear that much about worms attacking systems is because they are mostly used in corporate attacks. And corporations do not like to let the public know that they have been attacked recently. They like to keep it quiet as much as possible. And there is a good reason for this also. When the general public hears that you have been a victim of a web attack they will not think that your web offerings are that safe. Even though the attack was not your fault they will lose their faith in your security system and move on to your closest competitor even though your service might be better.
Worms are vicious little attacks that have been around for a long time now. The reason why you see them mostly in corporate attacks is because they mainly spread through the network. While it is possible for a worm to spread through the internet, it mostly spreads through the networks because it is a lot easier to figure out the setup of single corporation.
The biggest problems with worms are that they eat up the bandwidth in your system. That makes it incredibly hard to use the local network to do any kind of work. While there are some worms that will hurt the files that are on your system that is usually not the case. Most worms are placed out into the wild to cause a system resource drain. Some of the worms in the wild can be used to post messages from political groups. You saw this in the case of the worm that attacked the popular blogging network Tumblr. A hacker group decided that they wanted to be funny by posting racial messages all over everyones tumblr account. This attack was able to make a big web service like tumblr unusable for at least a day.
So as you can see worms can be quite a problem if you are running a corporate network. They are able to spread so quickly because they target that network in particular. Once they have found a way then it is able to spread and do its damage. So make sure if you are running a corporate network that you are able to see the signs of a worm right away.
photo: Luke Wisley