Different Types of Malware

What is malware? It means malicious software — any software that is created to cause disruption, damage or to get unauthorized access to assets in order to exfiltrate, delete or cause damage to data. Threat actors use different types of malware to achieve their objective like mentioned in the Cyber Kill Chain blog. So what are the different types of malware?

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  1. Phishing & Spam
    This first type is considered more as a social engineering attack. An attacker will send emails or texts with links to a website that looks identical to the original website. Attackers can use this to collect personal information, or to include malicious payloads within the website so it can be executed when a victim clicks on the link.
  2. Ransomware
    You may have heard about ransomware — threat actors would use a ransomware to lock up data then would demand a payment in order to regain access.
  3. Worms
    Worms are known to spread fast along the network. Attackers can inject a worm using phishing emails. Once a worm has compromised your device, it can be used to cause damage to files, exfiltrate data, used as a backdoor, and even start a replication process.
  4. Viruses
    Viruses start spreading once the infected file has been activated. Viruses are able activate on systems that have already been infected. Similar to worms, it is injected into a file or a document, then it can be spread to different systems as the infected file is shared.
  5. Bots & Botnets
    Any device that an attacker has remote control using malware is considered a bot. Bots can be used to cause DDoS attacks, steal data, or sending spam.
  6. Adware
    You may already have experience with adware — it will show random ads that are linked to malicious websites. This will cause lots of unwanted pop-ups, deplete system resources and even be used to inject spyware into victim’s systems.
  7. Spyware
    As you can guess, a spyware is used to secretly collect or record personal information and data. It can be injected into the victim’s targets using adware, or hiding it within a program that might seem legit.
  8. Trojan Horse
    Lastly, Trojan Horse is made to trick victims. It may seem like a legitimate file or program, but it is actually malicious. Trojan horses can be used by attackers to use your device as a bot, cause harm to data, or used to gain unauthorized access.

Comtact Ltd. “What Are the Different Types of Malware?” Comtact, 14 Mar. 2019, comtact.co.uk/blog/what-are-the-different-types-of-malware/.