Cyber attacks often make online platforms, like websites, unpleasant or inaccessible, or limit the ability of users to post or access a given Web page. Common types of cyber attacks include spam, phishing attacks, denial of service (DoS) attacks, and cyber espionage.

Examples of cyber attacks on the Internet include sophisticated cyber espionage or denial of service attacks targeting numerous targets in government, academia, health care, finance, education, media, and manufacturing.

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Here are the top common types of cyber attacks that threaten the Internet and the businesses and government agencies that depend on it.


Sending emails to the many people that access the Internet is often a hassle. Some companies use automated systems to try to cut down on the use of spam. The easiest way to stop spam is to monitor those who send it. Companies monitor incoming and outgoing emails, as well as spam filters to determine if emails are legitimate or fake. They may also consider an action such as blocking senders of certain kinds of email.

Examples of spam include unsolicited emails, promotional emails, and spam from people with nothing to do with a company.


According to companies like Fortinet, phishing attacks are more commonly known as unsolicited emails, which try to trick you into sharing your password with the attacker. These attacks are a relatively new phenomena that grew in popularity following the Internet’s increase in popularity. Phishing attacks are increasingly sophisticated, and come in several forms. They include threatening emails with malware, and in some cases, phishing schemes that offer free and/or rare items to those who comply. Phishing attacks are most effective when they are sent from someone known to the victim.

Examples of phishing attacks include phishing emails, emails with links to download malware, and emails with links to websites that attempt to steal your credit card or bank account.

Denial of Service (DoS) Attacks

A denial of service attack, also called a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack, is one of the most common types of cyber attacks, with about two-thirds of incidents having occurred through the Internet in 2016.

The attacker creates an overwhelming amount of traffic on a targeted Web or network by flooding it with junk or competing websites. The attacker aims to either delay or stop legitimate traffic, as well as to disrupt service, personal data, or even possibly take down the victim’s Web server.


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