What Can Data Breaches Teach Us About Cybersecurity Protocols and Methods?

By Srikanth
6 Min Read
IoT Device Cybersecurity

If you have an interest in cybersecurity, you may be curious to learn what analyzing and evaluating data breaches can teach us to better combat cybercrime in the future. 


By understanding the methods cybercriminals use to target their victims, cybersecurity professionals can develop increasingly sophisticated protocols to prevent future cyber attacks. 

But, what are the most common forms of data breaches that exist in cyberspace? And, perhaps most importantly, what are the most effective cybersecurity methods that can be drawn upon to intercept these? Let’s discuss. 

Learning about Cybersecurity Protocols and Methods

In the world of cyberspace, learning to keep your digital assets safe is essential to ensuring your cybersecurity. Of course, there are certain cybersecurity methods you can learn to use with very little formal education. For example, installing antivirus software and firewall protection programs onto your electronic devices is relatively straightforward, and you don’t need to be a cybersecurity expert to do this!

If you are curious to learn in greater detail about more sophisticated methods to protect your digital accounts, however, you may consider completing an online Master’s in Cybersecurity. The best part? Once you have completed your degree, you could be well on your way to a highly regarded career path as a cybersecurity professional.

But, as a cybersecurity expert, what are some of the challenges and types of data breaches you may face that you will need to protect your clients’ digital assets from? And, what are the most effective cybersecurity methods you will be utilizing to do this? Stay with us as we explore further.

What are Data Breaches?

Also commonly known as cyber attacks, data breaches in the digital world pose a serious cybersecurity threat. Most of these so-called cyber attacks usually involve malicious attempts to compromise digital accounts by hacking into and gaining unauthorized access to digital assets, with the end goal being to steal sensitive data from within the digital account. 

Various types of cyber attacks and data breaches can occur in cyberspace, and they can all compromise the security of your digital assets. Some of these tactics include:

Digital Account Hacking

By hacking into, and essentially hijacking an internet user’s digital accounts, cybercriminals can gain access to sensitive data such as passwords and other login information. Concerningly, there are even purpose-built software programs that hackers can use to break into digital accounts. For this reason, utilizing antivirus and firewall software to protect your digital assets is vital. 

Trojan Horse Malware

Malware – short for malicious software – comes in various forms. One of the most prevalent of these is known as trojan horse malware. This type of malware tends to disguise itself as a useful software program, or even hide itself within other legitimate software. Once downloaded, trojan horse malware can be utilized by hackers to gain access to digital accounts and devices.  


Similarly, spyware is another type of malware. Its main purpose is to ‘spy’ on the victim’s digital activity and to gather sensitive information such as financial data and logins which can then be sent back to the hacker. 


Perhaps the most severe form of malware, ransomware is utilized by cybercriminals to hijack and hold stolen digital assets ‘hostage’. The only way the victim can recover their stolen data is to pay a ransom to the cybercriminal.


Phishing is a type of data breach that attempts to make contact with a potential victim by sending them a scam email. Usually, these scam emails will contain a link for the unsuspecting victim to click, and will often ask for credit card details to be provided via the link. Phishing scams are especially effective when they target vulnerable victims who may be less internet savvy than others. 

What are the Most Effective Cybersecurity Methods?

One of the most effective cybersecurity methods to combat data breaches today is referred to as ethical hacking. But, what is ethical hacking, exactly?

Essentially, this process involves a qualified and professional ethical hacker following the same steps an illegal hacker or cybercriminal would perform. By going through these motions, an ethical hacker can gain a better idea of the methods cybercriminals use to compromise digital accounts. This then helps the cybersecurity professional to formulate processes to combat, intercept, and prevent these cyber attacks from occurring again.

Of course, ethical hacking is not the only method of ensuring cybersecurity. Importantly, by undertaking formal studies in the field, you can learn more about cybersecurity protocols, and help fight the war against cybercrime!

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