What is cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity is the protection of data, information, computers, devices and networks from cyber threats and attacks.

What is a cyber threat?

A cyber threat is an activity intended to compromise the security of your cyber threat environment by changing the availability, integrity or confidentiality of your systems or the information they contain.

What is a cyber threat environment?

A cyber threat environment is the online space where malicious cyber threat activity can occur.

Your cyber threat environment includes:


Cloud computing and storage


Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP)

Social media

Web-based applications

Internet-connected smart devices

E-commerce platforms and solutions

What are common cyber threats that affect Canadian businesses?

A virus is a contagious program or code that attaches itself to another piece of software and then reproduces itself on the PC, network or other computers via file transfers.

Adware displays ads on your computer. Often downloaded along with free tools installed by undesirable sources.

Spyware tracks Internet activities.

Password cracking occurs when user accounts are directly accessed without user authorization.

Exploits is a malicious code that takes advantage of unpatched vulnerabilities, the result of a software that is not updated.

Browser hijacker redirects normal search activity to give results the hacker wants you to see. Its intention is to make money off your web surfing. This can be as simple as sending ad-based content to phish for your banking, or other, data.

Ransomware locks users out of their computer or data on drives until they pay, generally via cyber-currency, to get a key. Even once you pay, you may never get a working key.

Man-in-the-middle (MitM) is a type of cyber attack where an attacker secretly intercepts a victim's communications with another party.

Trojans seek to discover information, like financial details. They can bring in other malicious code. Also used to take over resources to launch attacks against other devices.

Visit the Canadian Center for Cyber Security website for more information.