You probably know the basics of cybersecurity. It is the practice of securing devices such as computers, servers, mobile devices, electronic systems, networks, and data from all kinds of digital threats. Now the question is, what does threat mean?

Having a better understanding of this area is crucial, particularly today when cybersecurity threats are increasingly potent and frequent.


A cyber threat or cybersecurity threat is a malicious act done by cybercriminals. They steal and damage data or disrupt the wellbeing and stability of an enterprise’s digital network.

These threats may include several attacks, such as data breaches, computer viruses, denial of service, and several other attack vectors.

The question “what does threat mean?” can also be answered by identifying anything with the potential to inflict serious harm to a computer system, network, or other digital assets of an organization or individual.

The term “blended cyber threat” also exists, which means that a single threat may involve multiple exploits.

What Does Threat Mean?

Cybersecurity Threat Sources

Having a clear idea of the tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP) associated with threats is essential to understanding their origins. And when talking about sources, keep in mind that there’s always a human element and a motive.

Cyber threats come from different places, people, and contexts. It includes:

  • Individuals who create their attack vectors
  • Criminal organizations
  • Nation-states
  • Terrorists
  • Industrial spies
  • Organized crime groups
  • Unhappy insiders
  • Hackers
  • Business competitors

Cybersecurity Threat Techniques

There are several steps to cyber-attack implementation. It includes:

  • Initial access where a foothold within a network is accomplished
  • Command and control involve strategies that attackers use to communicate with a system under their control.
  • Collection where the target information is gathered and consolidated
  • Persistence where access to the target system is maintained by surpassing credential changes and reboots
  • Defense evasion includes strategies that help avoid detection.
  • Execution where codes are run to get through a target system
  • Discovery where inside intel is collected about networks used for the attackers’ tactical advantage
  • Credential access where usernames and credentials are stolen for reuse.
  • Impact where techniques are designed to disrupt the availability of data, systems, and networks.
  • A lateral movement where attackers begin moving from one system to another within a network.
  • Exfiltration is where the enterprise’s data is moved to an attacker’s system or network, where they have complete control.
  • Privilege escalation is where attackers gain high-level privileges on a root or local admin system.

Cybersecurity Threat Examples

What does threat mean if we don’t tackle its examples? It is vital to help you stay aware of and ahead of all the new threats lurking around that may impact your business. Here are some of the most prevalent cyber threats:

  • Malware – software intended to do malicious tasks on a device or network, including corrupting data or taking control of a system.
  • Spyware – Tag It is a form of malware that hides on a device. It supplies attackers with real-time information, making data-stealing more accessible for the host.
  • Phishing Attacks – Tag a technique used to lure users into providing sensitive data, such as personally identifiable information (PII), banking and credit card information, as well as passwords
  • Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Attacks- – Provide Strong Tag aim to disrupt a computer network by spamming the web with redundant requests to confuse the system and hinder legitimate requests from being fulfilled.
  • Ransomware – Tag another type of malware that demands a ransom from owners before they can get back their access to a computer system or data
  • Zero-Day Exploits – Tag a flaw in the software, hardware, or firmware unknown to the vendor
  • Advanced Persistent Threats – Tag where an attacker gains access to a system or network and stays there without being detected for a long time
  • Trojans – Tag creates a backdoor in an organization’s system, allowing the attacker to gain device control information access.
  • Wiper Attacks – Tag a form of malware designed to wipe the hard drive of the computer it infects‍
  • Intellectual Property Theft – Tag tealing or using someone else’s intellectual property without permission.
  • Theft of Money – Tag targets credit card numbers or bank accounts to steal money.
  • Data Manipulation – Tag aims to change the data to make it harder for an organization to operate.
  • Data Destruction – Tag when a cyber attacker attempts to delete data
  • Man-in-the-Middle Attack (MITM Attack) – Tag when an attack relays and possibly alters the communication between two parties.
  • Drive-by Downloads – Tag a download that happens without a person’s knowledge, which aims to install a computer virus, spyware, or malware
  • Malvertising – Tag It is the utilization of online marketing to increase malicious software.
  • Rogue Software – Tag another type of malware disguised as genuine software
  • Unpatched Software – Tag software with a known security weakness that is already fixed but not yet updated
  • Data Center Disrupted by Natural Disaster – Tag the data center housing your network could be disrupted by a natural disaster like earthquake or flooding.

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