Program designed to allow people to "share" audio
and video files with each other over a distributed network.
Slang name given to someone extremely knowledgeable about
computers. Pejorative in some circles—but not here. See
The process of examining and experimenting with something, such
as the telephone system or a computer, in order to find out how it works.
Hacking often occurs without the owner's knowledge or
Form of protest that uses computer skills, mostly focusing on
website defacing, to spread a message. See
Web site defacing.
An organization or collection of people who advocate violence and
discrimination against another group of people. Usually motivated by religious
or racial differences.
Sometimes called rule-based or artificial intelligence analysis,
it uses intelligent guesswork, which more often than not finds the solution
faster than a standard algorithm. Antivirus programs use heuristic analysis to
examine a file, and based on typical virus characteristics, make an educated
guess as to whether a file is infected or not.
A program that can directly examine and modify the contents of a
file or disk.
A phony target used to tempt hackers. Often used to keep hackers
logged on to a system long enough to trace their location, or to lure a hacker
into a harmless part of a network so that he or she can't get out and cause
real damage . Also called a goat file.
Popular instant messaging program.
Passing yourself off as another person
Popular term to describe hacking on an individual, commercial,
and international level.
A program that examines each file and calculates a numeric result
based on that file's size, time, and date stamp. If the integrity checker
notices that the file's size, time, or
date has changed, it assumes the file may have been infected by a virus or
modified by a hacker. See
Program designed to detect the presence of a hacker who has
already penetrated a system. Often abbreviated as
(Internet Relay Chat) A loosely structured network where people
can type and send messages to each other in real time.
Cross-platform programming language used to create web page
applets and full-blown applications.
A program that records keystrokes and/or mouse clicks on a
computer, usually without the user's knowledge.
A free version of Unix designed for personal computers. Although
Linux can be copied and distributed without restriction, many companies sell
their own versions of Linux that include technical support, software, or other
A type of program, often buried within another program, that is
set to go off on a certain date or by a specific event, erasing data or
crashing the computer. Logic bombs are often inserted by disgruntled
programmers willing to sabotage their own programs to get back at their
A virus written using the macro programming language of a
particular program. The most common macro viruses are written in WordBasic or
Visual Basic for Applications, although a few macro viruses have been written
in the macro programming language for WordPerfect and Lotus 1-2-3.
Visual Basic for
(MBR) The information stored on a hard disk that tells the
computer how the hard disk is partitioned. Most hard disks have only one
partition but can usually be divided into as many as four
A virus that made headlines in all the major newspapers worldwide
in 1992. The Michelangelo virus isn't as common as many other
Acronym that stands for Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) Audio
Layer- 3, a file compression format for storing digital audio.
See Napster and Gnutella.
A type of virus that can infect both files and boot
A programming tool kit designed to help virus writers create
polymorphic viruses, which can modify themselves to avoid detection by
antivirus scanners. See