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Cookies you can’t eat, clouds you can’t see, and other cyber security terms you need to know


Keeping your business running smoothly can be a challenge, especially if you operate online (and who doesn’t these days?). But understanding key cyber security terms is an important first step toward keeping your business cyber-safe. Here’s a handy list.


  1. Botnet

    Short for “robot network,” a botnet is a group of computers that are coordinated to perform a task. In the hands of cyber criminals, botnets can be used to transmit malware or spam, or to steal data.

  2. Cloud

    The cloud is a global network of servers that are connected and operate as a single ecosystem. This technology allows you to store, access, and deliver files and services through the Internet from anywhere in the world. To keep your information safe in the cloud, make sure your employees update their passwords regularly, opt for two-step verifications, and encrypt your files.

  3. Cookie

    A computer cookie is a small data file that a website puts on your computer when you are browsing. Cookies can keep track of your visits and activity, and are often used to enable websites to recognise whether you are logged in, have items in your shopping cart, or provide a customised experience.


  1. DDoS attack

    DDoS stands for Distributed Denial of Service, a form of cyber-attack in which a website is flooded with malicious traffic or data from multiple sources in an attempt to make the site unusable.

  2. Firewall

    This defensive technology can be software or hardware-based and is designed to block hackers and other bad actors from getting into your network or computer.

  3. IP address

    This is the address of your computer. When you operate over a network or connect the Internet, your IP address is your computer’s unique identifier.

  4. Malware

    Short for “malicious software,” malware is a program specifically designed to damage or gain unauthorised access to your computer. It can take many forms—these are two of the most common:

    • Ransomware
      A form of malware that prevents you from accessing files on your computer, basically holding your data hostage by encrypting your files so that cyber criminals can demand that you pay a ransom for the decryption key.
    • Trojan horse
      Allows hackers to gain remote access to your computers by masquerading as a benign application—for example, a fake advertisement or email attachment. Clicking on a Trojan horse may allow attackers to access your personal information or download a virus onto your computer.

    To keep malware from affecting your business, put a multi-level network protection strategy in place, ensure your operating systems and virus software are updated, use firewalls, and avoid clicking on suspicious links or attachments.

  5. Open Wi-Fi

    Open Wi-Fi networks are unencrypted, meaning they’re not protected and anyone can access them. This may allow potential hackers to see the sites you visit, your login passwords, and your personal data. The best way to avoid hackers is to only log on to encrypted Wi-Fi, which requires a password.

  6. Phishing

    These scams pose as emails from an organisation or person that you know, and typically include a malicious link or attachment, that, if clicked on, will download malware onto your computer or system. The easiest way to avoid these scams is to never click on a suspicious link or attachment.

  7. VPN (Virtual Private Network)

    A VPN is an encrypted Internet connection often used by businesses. It allows you to connect safely into a network to conduct work remotely and transmit sensitive data.

No part of this article may be reproduced in any written, electronic, recording, or printed form without written permission of Chubb.

Disclaimer - The content of the above article is not intended to constitute professional advice. Although all content is believed to be accurate, Chubb Insurance Singapore Limited (Chubb) makes no warranty or guarantee about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the content of this article. Users relying on any content do so at their own risk.

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