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Internet Safety – Guarding Against Cross-Scripting Attacks

Internet Safety – Guarding Against Cross-Scripting Attacks

Experts have encountered one too many web security problems over the years but one of the most common is Cross-site scripting or XSS attacks. A lot of studies and inquiries have been conducted for a number of years now but it still appears to be a major threat among Internet users.

Cross-site scripting attacks are usually directed at websites that maintain sensitive personal information like banking usernames and passwords. The problem with these attacks is the fact that they’re quite difficult to detect. This means even technically inclined users would probably have to deal with XSS for a while before it’s actually put to a stop.

Another word for this particular type of Internet threat is script injection which works by manipulating the JavaScript code on a particular site’s URL. As a user clicks on that URL, this script takes over with the use of a forged URL and then it begins to work by letting the hacker manipulate the target site. When cross-scripting is successful, a user could think he’s logging in to his real account in a legitimate website when, in fact, he’s dealing with a fake website created by the attacker. By then, his log in details would have already been recorded and the hacker could now use such for his personal gain.

Obviously, the purpose of cross scripting is to obtain people’s usernames and passwords for their own use. Technically, this is considered phishing and has grown in popularity as the most common method used to steal people’s identity for fraudulent transactions.

A lot of people have actually fallen victim because they’ve been rather neglectful of web security precautions such as avoiding to click on any links contained in spam. These dubious emails can come with many different sorts of messages but usually, this would be something designed to look as though it was sent by a bank with which a user has an account or a financial institution. When the person actually clicks the link, that triggers cross-scripting of that certain bank’s URL which then allows the hacker to exploit the website. More importantly, this is how the hacker obtains log in information from users who actually believe they’re logging into a legitimate site.

Also called spoofing, these attacks don’t work with sites that use an SSL certificate, however. User awareness also always plays a good part in ensuring online security of one’s sensitive data or information. In fact, cross-scripting and other phishing attacks could very well be prevented if the person is aware of the risks he’s facing and is continually educating himself about the latest techniques that could be used by cons.

On the part of the spoofed corporation or institution, there is a certain functionality that the site owner needs to install in order to block attempts for script attacks. However, it will still be best to evaluate the user’s log in details before actually processing the requested transaction. Anything that users enter into the website should always be treated as a threat until such time that it is proven otherwise.

In terms of personal security on the web, software is necessary to protect a computer such as anti-virus, anti-malware and every other protective program that works to ensure online security.

Source by Brad M Smith

Posted by brainiac / Posted on 20 Aug
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