8 Common Network Vulnerabilities and How to Prevent Them

As the digital threat landscape evolves daily, cybercrime continues to impact companies across Canada. In 2021 alone, an unprecedented 85.7% of Canadian businesses were affected by at least one cyber attack during a 12-month period.

With 60% of businesses being forced to close within six months of suffering a data breach, this information highlights the importance of addressing network vulnerabilities and threats.

There are several different types of vulnerabilities in network security that can impact your business. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at eight of them, and what you can do to prevent them.

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Resolve common network vulnerabilities with help from the experts at Tenecom.


The 8 Major Types of Network Security Threats and How to Prevent Them

1. Malware

Malware is one of the most common cyber threats and vulnerabilities. It involves malicious software that infiltrates, damages, or disrupts an entire computer network.

When deployed on a system, malware steals sensitive information, damages and corrupts system files, or provides unauthorized network access to attackers.

There are many different types of malware, including:

  • Worms
  • Trojans
  • Viruses
  • Spyware
  • Ransomware

If your business has been hit by a malware attack, there are several ways you can combat it.

Common tactics include:

  • Creating backups of your data
  • Carefully monitoring your online activity
  • Performing a reinstallation of your operating system
  • Performing a vulnerability scan of affected devices and operating systems


2. Phishing Attacks

Phishing attacks are a form of social engineering where cybercriminals impersonate a trustworthy source to deceive victims into disclosing sensitive data and information, such as login credentials or credit card information.

These attacks typically involve fraudulent emails or websites, which, when clicked on or accessed, trick users into thinking they are interacting with a legitimate source.

Common types of phishing attacks include:

  • Vishing: Executed through VoIP spoofing
  • Quishing: Executed through fraudulent QR codes
  • SMiShing: Executed through text messages (SMS)
  • Spear Phishing: An attack that targets you personally
  • Whaling: An attack with a larger target, such as a company CEO

The best ways to identify and avoid these information security vulnerabilities is by not opening any emails or attachments or clicking on links that do not appear to be from legitimate sources. Additionally, cyber awareness training can educate your staff on how to identify spoofed emails.


3.  Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Attacks

DDoS attacks occur when multiple systems flood a targeted server, network, or application with a massive amount of traffic. This causes it to become overwhelmed and unavailable to users.

Attackers use botnets, which are networks of compromised devices, to coordinate and amplify the attack, making it challenging to trace the source.

DDoS attacks can be identified and resolved through network security and monitoring services that rapidly detect unusual activity, such as the massive traffic surges these attacks cause

Common Network Vulnerabilities-1


4.  Insider Threats

Insider threats involve malicious or negligent actions by an organization’s employees, contractors, or other insiders with authorized access to critical systems or sensitive information.

These threats can be intentional (e.g., data theft, sabotage) or unintentional (e.g., falling victim to a phishing attack or poor security practices).

The good news is that there are many ways that these cyber security vulnerabilities can be prevented, including:

  • Improving your physical security
  • Instituting a stringent security policy
  • Using network and LAN segmentation
  • Relying on Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)
  • Screening any new hires to determine if they pose a security risk


5. Password Attacks

Password attacks seek to gain unauthorized access to a system by cracking users’ weak passwords.

Common techniques include brute force attacks (trying all possible password combinations), dictionary attacks (using a list of commonly used passwords), and keyloggers (capturing keystrokes to steal login credentials).

The best methods of preventing password attacks include:

  • Using MFA systems
  • Not reusing passwords
  • Frequently changing your passwords
  • Looking out for any suspicious activity on your accounts
  • Creating unique and strong passwords for all of your accounts


6. Man-in-the-Middle (MITM) Attacks

MITM attacks are another of the most common network vulnerabilities. They involve an attacker intercepting communication between two parties, altering or eavesdropping on the data being exchanged.

Malicious actors use MITM attacks to manipulate and steal data or impersonate one of the parties involved to gain access to systems and sensitive data.

Common attack methods include:

  • False websites
  • Intrusive pop-up messages
  • Suspicious security certificates

You can prevent MITM attacks with:

  • Endpoint security measures
  • Secure network connections
  • Virtual Private Networks (VPNs)


7. Advanced Persistent Threats (APT)

APTs are targeted, sophisticated cyber attacks often carried out by well-funded, highly skilled individuals, such as nation-states or organized cybercriminal groups.

These attacks are typically aimed at high-value targets, like governments or large corporations, and involve long-term campaigns. During these campaigns, attackers remain undetected within the target’s network for an extended period to steal sensitive information or disrupt operations.

There are several methods of preventing these information security vulnerabilities, which include:

  • Limiting access to devices
  • Strong user access control
  • Securing your digital assets
  • Ongoing system monitoring and maintenance


8. Zero-Day Exploits

A zero-day exploit is an attack that exploits a previously unknown vulnerability in a software or hardware system.

Because the vulnerability is not publicly known, developers have not yet had the opportunity to create a patch, leaving the system vulnerable to cyber attacks.

Zero-day exploits are particularly dangerous because they often provide attackers with a significant advantage over their targets, who are unaware of the threat until it has already been exploited.

You can prevent zero-day exploits from impacting your business with:

  • Web application firewalls
  • Regular patch management
  • Next-generation antivirus protection
  • Threat intelligence platforms and engines
  • Updating or replacing any outdated software


Interested in learning more about how to avoid cyber security vulnerabilities? Check out these blogs:


Mitigate Network Vulnerabilities With Tenecom

Your network serves as the backbone of your day-to-day operations. In order to prevent unauthorized access and data theft, you must ensure that it is not liable to any network security vulnerabilities.

Given that Canadian businesses paid an average of $7 million in post-incident recovery costs between March 2021 and March 2022, now is the time to take action against cyber vulnerabilities.

The best way to protect your business from the many types of vulnerabilities in network security is by choosing Tenecom as your trusted cybersecurity partner.

Backed by more than 35 years of IT industry experience, our clients have experienced zero uncontrolled cyber attacks and data breaches as a result of working with us.

You’ll also benefit from a full suite of cybersecurity services, including vulnerability assessments, next-gen firewalls, 24/7/365 monitoring, and more.

Elevate your protection to prevent various types of attacks in network security by contacting us today to schedule a consultation with one of our security specialists.

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