Cyber attack is the name given by (usually sensationalist) articles and documents describing crimes that occur in a virtual world as opposed to tangible attacks such as war. A targeted cyber attack is when the attacker specifically targets someone or a company. A successful attack will typically allow the attacker to gain access to the victim’s assets, allowing stealing of sensitive internal data and possibly cause disruption and denial of service in some cases.
One example of a targeted cyber attack is an attack in an industrial espionage case where documents were stolen by penetrating a victim’s database server. Another example can be the actions of a jealous boyfriend spying on his girlfriend’s online activities by hacking into her instant messenger or email account. Increasingly, the results of cyber attacks can be felt in a tangible world – victims of such attacks typically suffer financial losses and might also lose credibility.
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