How Cyber Attacks Happen - Why do Cyber Attacks Happen - Cyber Security Tutorial

Why do cyber attacks happen ?


Financial gain

  • Cyber Criminals launch most cyber attacks, especially those against commercial entities, for financial gain.
  • These attacks often aim to steal sensitive data, such as customer credit card numbers or employee personal information, 
  • Which the Cyber Criminals then use to access money or goods using the victims' identities.
  • There financially motivated attacks are designed to disable computer systems, with Cyber Criminals locking computers so owners and authorized users cannot access the applications or data they need
  • attackers then demand that the targeted organizations pay them ransoms to unlock the computer systems.

Disruption and revenge

  • Bad actors also launch attacks specifically to sow chaos, confusion, discontent, frustration or mistrust.
  • They could be taking such action as a way to get revenge for acts taken against them.
  • They could be aiming to publicly embarrass the attacked entities or to damage the organizations' reputations.
  • These attacks are often directed at government entities but can also hit commercial entities or nonprofit organizations.
  • Nation-state attackers are behind some of these types of attacks. Others, called hacktivists, might launch these types of attacks as a form of protest against the targeted entity
  • A secretive decentralized group of internationalist activists known as Anonymous is the most well known of such groups.
  • Insider threats are attacks that come from employees with malicious intent.


  • Governments around the world are also involved in cyber attacks, with many national governments
  • Acknowledging or suspected of designing and executing attacks against other countries as part of ongoing political
  • Economic and social disputes. These types of attacks are classified as cyberware.

What can cyberattacks do ?

  • Cyber Attacks can damage enterprises. They can cause valuable downtime, data loss or manipulation, and money loss through ransoms. Further, downtime can lead to major service interruptions and financial losses. For example:
    • DoS, DDoS and malware attacks can cause system or server crashes.
    • DNS tunneling and SQL injection attacks can alter, delete, insert or steal data into a system.
    • Phishing and zero-day exploit attacks allow attackers entry into a system to cause damage or steal valuable information.
    • Ransomware attacks can disable a system until the company pays the attacker a ransom.

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