Five Types of Cyberattacks You Need to Know - Zerto

Five Types of Cyberattacks You Need to Know

May 16, 2022
Est. Reading Time: 3 minutes

The threat of cyberattacks on organizations is greater than ever before. Organizations are rapidly adopting cloud services, work from home policies, and IoT, leaving their data in disparate locations, in different workloads, and at the hands of more users than ever before. In this threat landscape, it means they are leaving themselves exposed to vulnerabilities they don’t even know exist.

While cyberattacks have been around for years, they are now evolving at a faster pace, and new types of attacks are entering the scene every day. I’ll describe five types of cyberattacks that you might not be aware of, but you certainly should be.

Credential reuse attack

This is not a new threat. Simply put, credential reuse or ‘stuffing’ is when a cybercriminal gains access to valid credentials and uses them to gain access and compromise other accounts and systems. Although this is not a novel idea, organizations, and their users (even critical employees), continue to re-use credentials and place themselves and their organization at risk.

Akamai reported that researchers detected 193 billion credential stuffing attacks globally.


Insider threat

As long as there are individuals in organizations, there will always be a risk of an insider threat. This may come in the form of a current or former employee, contractor, or even a partner. There are several types of insider threats:

  • Employees stealing information for personal use
  • Theft of intellectual property or credentials that are sold to a foreign government or organization
  • A disgruntled employee sabotaging data, network, or production systems

As the 2022 Cost of Insider Threats: Global Report reveals, insider threat incidents have risen 44% over the past two years, with costs per incident up more than a third to $15.38 million.


Phishing attacks

Phishing attacks are social engineering attacks designed to steal data, credentials, and/or gain access to a system. These attacks are usually coupled with other attacks like ransomware. In the past, these spoofed emails, messages, or even calls were easy to identify. Cybercriminals have become much more skilled at sending emails with valid design and verbiage to appear legitimate for any institution.

According to F5 Networks, phishing attacks soared 220% during the Covid-19 peak as cybercriminal opportunism intensifies.


Man-in-the-middle attack (MiTM)

TechTarget defines a MiTM attack as “a type of cyberattack in which the attacker secretly intercepts and relays messages between two parties who believe they are communicating directly with each other. The attack is a type of eavesdropping in which the attacker intercepts and then controls the entire conversation.”


Double-Extortion Ransomware

Although there are other types of attacks like Denial-of-service (DDoS) and SQL injections that happen at a higher rate, we believe double-extortion ransomware attacks are especially terrifying.

Double-extortion ransomware functions the same way as a traditional ransomware cyber-attack, the only difference is that instead of simply encrypting data and demanding a ransom, attackers will threaten to leak or delete critical data. This situation can be devastating to an organization, financially and in terms of reputation and consumer trust.


Cybersecurity is one of the few industries where innovation is on the side of a criminal. Hackers will find exploits, open opportunities, and even zero-day vulnerabilities. Once exposed, cybersecurity professionals and vendors work hard to address these threats, but novel attacks will continue, and the threat will grow. Take steps today to protect your organization from the inevitable. Outsmart cyber criminals with Zerto’s continuous data protection.

Are you ransomware ready? Check out the Ransomware Readiness 101 ebook and use the checklist.

Ready to get started? Get Out of Ransomware Jail for free.

David Paquette
Product Marketing Manager

David Paquette is a Product Marketing Manager at Zerto. He has over 20 years of experience in disaster recovery, backup, and business continuity solutions. Prior to Zerto, David was a Product Marketing Manager at Scale Computing working with hyperconverged infrastructure, edge computing, and DRaaS solutions. Previous to Scale Computing, David worked for over 17 years at Double-Take Software/Vision Solutions in various roles from software testing, systems engineering, product marketing, and product management.