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Chapter 17. Data Security > Threats from Outside

Threats from Outside

Today's companies are using computer communications in ever-increasing ways, and these same applications are in the hands of criminals. Working from the privacy of their own homes, would-be criminals often gain access to an organization's computer for the purpose of stealing or altering information. This electronic trespassing or vandalism has several variations, which are referred to by their own slang terms:

  • Hacking— Breaking into computer systems to gain access to restricted or private information

  • Freaking— The defrauding of a telephone company using stolen long distance access codes or credit cards

  • Crashing— Breaking into a computer system in order to shut it down or turn it off

  • Trashing— The altering or erasing of a computer's data files

  • Viruses— A malicious computer program that destroys data or opens unauthorized access to a computer


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