What is a zero-click attack? How dangerous is it?

The more the internet world develops, the more forms of cyber attacks are actively changing in a more complex and dangerous direction. In the past few years, zero-click has been emerging as one of the most dangerous and obsessive cyberattack methods for not only ordinary internet users, but also the security world.
So what is zero-click really and how dangerous is it? Let’s find out right here.

Zero-click attack definition

Traditional malicious attack methods often have the same scenario of tricking the victim into taking some different type of action to open the way for malicious code to enter the system. In such an attack, opening emails, downloading attachments or clicking on malicious links are the most common behaviors that will allow malware to gain access to your device.

However, the zero-click attack is more dangerous in that it does not require any click or interaction by the victim to work. It can be said that Zero-click is a real threat with attack capabilities upgraded to a new level. As the name suggests, it doesn’t need to scam or convince users to click on any links or files, but malware can still get into their devices easily.

In zero-click attacks, hackers don’t need to use “social engineering” or other psychological tactics to get you to click their malware. Instead, that malicious will silently infiltrate your system completely automatically. This makes attacks much harder to track, to the point where victims are completely unaware that they are being attacked. This form of attack allows for an increased success rate in malicious activities, especially as people are becoming more and more wary of clicking on suspicious links or messages.

Zero-click is mainly aimed at abusing vulnerabilities that exist in the system. Vulnerabilities of this type are sometimes sold by hackers on the black market, or companies will offer generous rewards to those who find them.

Any system that in the process requires the analysis of received data to determine if it is trustworthy, is at risk of zero-click attacks. This fact makes email and online messaging apps attractive targets.

Plus, the end-to-end encryption found in apps like Apple’s iMessage makes it very difficult to determine if a zero-click attack is taking place, since the contents of the data packet are nothing. other than sender and receiver.

These attacks also do not often leave many traces. For example, a zero-click email attack can copy the entire contents of a victim’s email inbox before disappearing on its own. And the more complex the application, the more room there is for zero-click exploits.

Zero-click attack prevention

Unfortunately, because zero-click attacks are difficult to detect and do not require the victim to take any action, prevention is extremely difficult. However, taking the initiative in prevention can help limit some of the risk.

Update your device and applications regularly, including your web browser. New updates often contain patches for known vulnerabilities, preventing malicious actors from taking advantage of them. For example, many victims of the infamous WannaCry ransomware attacks could have avoided them with a simple update.

Use good enough anti-spyware and malware tools on the system. In addition, you should also get into the habit of using a VPN when connecting to the internet in public, unreliable places.

Application developers should rigorously test their products regularly, and immediately deploy patches for any vulnerabilities as soon as possible.

Stay safe on the internet!


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