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Cyber Security Course For Beginners

Cyber Security Course For Beginners
Course content :

What is information security?
-Introduction of Information security
-How attackers access to information
-What are the types of breaches
-Use of hashing
-Importance of cryptography etc.
Introduction to Cyber Security:
- What is Hacking?
- various forms of hacking
What harm are hackers capable of causing?
What motivates people to hack?
What are the goals of Ethical Hacker?
What are the Skills and Tools required for Ethical Hackers?
Some Essential Tools required becoming Ethical Hacker
Process of Ethical Hacking
What are the Key Domains Of Ethical Hacking?
What is bWAPP?

Lesson 1: Introduction

This course will provide you the introduction about information security fundamentals. In this course we will know about what is Information security, how attackers access to information, what are the types of breaches, use of hashing, importance of cryptography etc.

The practice of preventing unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration, destruction, and interruption to information is known as INFORMATION SECURITY or infosec for short. It includes a variety of tactics, tools, and procedures intended to protect networks, data, systems, and other assets from different security risks.

Lesson 2: Let's examine each of the information security topics in detail:

  1. Confidentiality: This entails guarding against unwanted access to private data. It makes sure that particular data can only be accessed by authorized people or systems, shielding it from unwanted disclosure.
  2. Integrity: Preserving the reliability and correctness of data is known as information integrity. It entails guarding against accidental or illegal changes to data, guaranteeing the accuracy of the information.
  3. Availability: This is making sure that data and the systems that handle and save it are ready to go when needed. For businesses to continue operating and offering the services they do, availability is essential.
  4. Authenticity: Verifying the identity of users or systems to ensure that they are who or what they claim to be.
  5. Accountability: Tracking and logging activities to establish responsibility for actions taken within a system.
  6. Non-repudiation: Ensuring that a party cannot deny the authenticity of their actions or the data they have transmitted.

Among other things, information security measures can involve the use of firewalls, access restrictions, antivirus software, encryption, security rules, and employee training. It is an ever-evolving field that adapts to new and developing threats in the digital sphere. Businesses make information security investments to protect sensitive data and uphold stakeholder, partner, and customer trust.

Lesson 3:What is Hashing in Cyber Security?

A process of transforming the input data into a fixed-length string of characters, which is typically a sequence of numbers and letters, is called Hashing. The output, known as the hash value or hash code, is generated using a specific algorithm called a hash function. 

Hashing is widely used in cyber security for various purposes, including:

  1. Storing Password Securely: Hashing is commonly employed to securely store passwords. Instead of storing actual passwords, systems store the hashed values. When a user attempts to log in, the system hashes the entered password and compares it to the stored hash. This adds a layer of security because even if the stored hashes are compromised, attackers would need to reverse-engineer the hash to obtain the original password.
  2. Integration of Data: Hash functions are used to verify the integrity of data. By generating a hash value for a file or a piece of data, one can compare it with the hash value later on to check if the data has been altered or tampered with. If the hash values match, the data is likely intact; if they differ, it suggests potential tampering.
  3. Digital Signatures: Hashing is a fundamental component of digital signatures. In this context, a hash of a message is created and then encrypted with the sender's private key to produce a digital signature. The recipient can use the sender's public key to decrypt and verify the signature, ensuring both the authenticity and integrity of the message.
  4. Cryptographic Applications: Hash functions are crucial in various cryptographic protocols, providing a fast and efficient way to generate fixed-size outputs. This is important in applications such as creating hash-based message authentication codes (HMACs) and ensuring data integrity in communication protocols.
  5. Data Deduplication: Hashing is also used in data deduplication processes to identify and eliminate duplicate copies of data. By comparing hash values, systems can quickly identify identical pieces of information.

It's important to note that while hashing provides a quick and efficient way to generate fixed-size representations of data, it is not reversible. In other words, you cannot retrieve the original input data from the hash value, making it a one-way function. This property enhances the security of hashing in various cyber security applications.

The study and application of secure communication methods in the presence of other parties—often referred to as adversaries—is known as cryptography. In order to protect the confidentiality and integrity of the data, mathematical techniques are used to change the data into a format that is unreadable by unauthorized users. Securing communication in the face of possible adversaries is the main objective of cryptography.

There are two main types of cryptography:

  1. Symmetric-key cryptography: In this approach, the same key is used for both encryption and decryption. Both the sender and the recipient must have the key, and keeping it secret is crucial for security.
  2. Public-key cryptography: This method involves a pair of keys - a public key used for encryption and a private key used for decryption. The public key can be freely distributed, allowing anyone to encrypt messages, while only the holder of the private key can decrypt and read those messages.

Cryptography is widely utilized in many different applications, including preserving sensitive data, facilitating safe online transactions, guaranteeing the integrity of digital signatures, and securing internet communication. It is an essential part of computer science and plays a major role in information security.

Lesson 4: What is breaching In Cyber Security and some types of breaches?

In cyber security, "breaching" typically refers to a security breach, which is an unauthorized or unwanted intrusion into a computer system, network, or application. Cyber security breaches can have serious consequences, including unauthorized access to sensitive data, disruption of services, financial losses, and damage to an organization's reputation. There are various types of cyber security breaches, each with its own methods and goals

Some common types of breaches include:

  1. Malware Attacks: It is done by using viruses, worms and trojans. Viruses are Malicious software that attaches itself to legitimate programs or files and spreads when those files are executed. Worms are Self-replicating malware that spreads across networks without human intervention. Trojans are Malware disguised as legitimate software to trick users into installing it. Once installed, it can perform malicious activities without the user's knowledge.
  2. Phishing Attacks: In this Attackers use fraudulent emails, messages, or websites to trick individuals into revealing sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, or financial details.
  3. Denial-of-Service (DoS) and Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) Attacks: DoS meaning Overloading a system, network, or service to make it unavailable to users. DDoS meaning Coordinating multiple systems to flood a target with traffic, making it difficult or impossible for legitimate users to access services.
  4. Man-in-the-Middle (MitM) Attacks: In this Attackers intercept and potentially alter communication between two parties without their knowledge. This can lead to the theft of sensitive information. 
  5. SQL Injection: Exploiting vulnerabilities in a web application's database layer to manipulate or retrieve data, often unauthorized.
  6. Cross-Site Scripting (XSS): In this Injecting malicious scripts into web pages viewed by other users. These scripts can be used to steal information or perform actions on behalf of the user without their consent.
  7. Zero-Day Exploits: Targeting vulnerabilities in software or hardware that are not yet known to the vendor or the public. Attackers take advantage of these vulnerabilities before a patch or solution is available. 
  8. Insider Threats: Breaches caused by individuals within an organization, either intentionally or unintentionally, who misuse their access to sensitive information.
  9. Ransomware Attacks: Malware that encrypts a user's files, demanding payment (usually in cryptocurrency) for the decryption key. If the ransom is not paid, the victim may lose access to their data permanently.

Manipulating individuals into divulging confidential information or performing actions that may compromise security.

It's crucial for organizations and individuals to implement strong cyber security measures, including firewalls, antivirus software, regular software updates, and user education, to mitigate the risks of breaches. Additionally, monitoring and incident response plans are essential for detecting and responding to breaches promptly.

Lesson 5: Introduction to Cyber Security:

The confidential practice to protect computer systems, networks, programs, and data from digital attacks, theft, damage, or unauthorized access comes under Cyber security. The primary goal of cyber security is to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of information in the digital realm. We can take many types of steps in Cyber security to keep our digital assets safe and secure such as Access Control, Firewalls and Network Security, Encryption, Antivirus and Antimalware Software, Security Awareness Training, Security Audits and Assessments, Risk Management. 

  1. Limiting access to authorized users and systems while preventing unauthorized access comes under Access Control.
  2. Implementing barriers between a private internal network and external networks, like the internet, to monitor and control incoming and outgoing network traffic comes under Firewalls and Network Security.
  3. Encrypting data to become unreadable without the proper decryption key.
  4. Using software to detect, prevent, and remove malicious software (malware) such as viruses, worms, and spyware by using Antivirus and Antimalware Software.
  5. Keeping software, operating systems, and applications up-to-date with the latest security patches to address vulnerabilities and weaknesses comes under Patch Management.
  6. Making plans to recover from data breaches or other security incidents.
  7.  Security Awareness Training time to time.
  8. Regularly evaluating and testing the security posture of systems and networks to identify and address vulnerabilities comes under Security Audits and Assessments.
  9. Identifying, assessing, and prioritizing potential risks to an organization's information systems and implementing measures to mitigate those risks comes under Risk Management.

Because of our growing reliance on digital technology and the internet, cyber security is now essential to protecting private data, sensitive information, and the smooth operation of governments and enterprises. In order to defend against a broad spectrum of potential hazards, the area of cyber security must adapt and use cutting-edge tactics as cyber threats continue to evolve.

Lesson 6: What is Hacking?

The act of obtaining illegal access to computer systems or networks, frequently with the goal of altering, stealing, or disturbing information, is referred to as hacking. Hackers, who can be malevolent intruders or ethical security specialists, employ a variety of methods and instruments to take advantage of weaknesses in hardware, software, or human nature. There are various forms of hacking, such as:

  1. Black Hat Hacking: This is the phrase for malicious hacking, in which people or groups take advantage of weaknesses in order to steal money, do harm, or pursue personal gain.
  2. White Hat Hacking: Also referred to as ethical hacking, white hat hackers utilize their expertise to assist companies in locating and resolving security flaws. Rather than trying to compromise system security, they strive to strengthen it.
  3. Grey Hat Hacking: This type of hacking lies in the middle between the black hat and white hat categories. Even though they might hack without permission, they might not have malevolent motives. When they identify weaknesses, they might let the impacted party know.
  4. Hacktivism: This form of hacking is driven by political or social motives. Hacktivists use their skills to promote a particular cause or to protest against perceived injustices.
  5. Phishing: While not technically hacking in the traditional sense, phishing involves tricking individuals into providing sensitive information, such as passwords or credit card details, by pretending to be a trustworthy entity.
It is noteworthy that although hacking is often associated with cybercrime, ethical hacking is an essential component of cyber security maintenance and advancement. By assisting in the detection and remediation of vulnerabilities prior to their exploitation by malevolent hackers, ethical hackers enhance the overall security of computer networks and systems.

Lesson 7:What harm are hackers capable of causing?

Cyber security hacking can have a devastating effect. Using whichever method they choose, once hackers have accessed your devices or data, they can:

  • Take your money and create bank and credit card accounts in your name.
  • Ruin your credit score
  • Make a new account request. Extra credit cards or Personal Identification Numbers (PINs)
  • Make purchases on your behalf
  • Make it simpler to use your credit by adding oneself or an alias under their control as an authorized user.
  • Acquire cash advances
  • Utilize your Social Security number improperly.
  • Sell your data to others who will misuse it for nefarious ends.
  • Error or damage crucial files on your PC
  • Acquire confidential personal data and divulge it, or make threats to divulge it, in public

Lesson 8: What motivates people to hack?

Why do hackers hack, and who are they? A hacker's motivations can vary. Among the most typical are:

  1. Cash: Frequently, money is the primary driver. By obtaining your passwords, getting access to your bank or credit card information, holding your data ransom, or selling it to other hackers on the dark web, hackers can profit from your information.
  2. Business espionage: Hackers are occasionally driven by the desire to steal trade secrets from rival businesses. Hacking used to obtain access to confidential information or intellectual property with the goal of outwitting competitors in the business world is known as corporate espionage.
  3. Espionage in politics: Hackers can be used by nation states for political ends. This could be trying to instigate political instability, obtaining government or military papers, stealing confidential material, or meddling in elections.
  4. Retribution: Hackers are occasionally driven by rage, a desire for vengeance against people or companies they believe have wronged them in some way.
  5. Cybercrime: One instance of civil disobedience is hacking. Some hackers utilize their expertise to further a specific social cause or political agenda.
  6. Notoriety: A sense of accomplishment from breaking "the system" might serve as a driving force for hackers. Hackers are sometimes competitive; they may challenge one another and win notoriety for their exploits. They have a forum to brag about their actions thanks to social media.
  7. Enhancements in security: Not every hacking is done for evil. Certain hacking techniques, such penetration testing and white hat hacking, are used to find weaknesses in order to make user security better overall. Thus, ethical hacking is associated with white hat hacking.

Lesson 9: What are the goals of Ethical Hacker?

There are many important works of Ethical Hacker who are skilled professionals and have the special permissions to check security of any system. Here are the primary goals of ethical hackers:

  1. Identifying Vulnerabilities
  2. Assessing Security Controls
  3. Mitigating Risks
  4. Ensuring Compliance
  5. Enhancing Incident Response Preparedness
  6. Educating Stakeholders
  7. Protecting Confidentiality and Integrity
  8. Building Trust

In summary, ethical hacking seeks to proactively identify and address security vulnerabilities, ultimately enhancing the resilience of information systems against potential cyber threats. It is a proactive and responsible approach to cyber security that aligns with the broader goal of maintaining a secure and trustworthy digital environment.

Lesson 10: What are the Skills and Tools required for Ethical Hackers?

Ethical hackers, also known as white hat hackers, play a crucial role in ensuring the security of computer systems, networks, and applications. To become a successful ethical hacker, individuals need a combination of skills and tools. 

Some Essential Skills required becoming Ethical Hacker:  

  1. Knowledge of Programming languages such as Python, Java, C++, and scripting languages.
  2. Knowledge of Networking Skills and protocols like as TCP/IP, subnetting, and routing.
  3. Knowledge of Operating System like as Dos, Linux and Windows.
  4. Knowledge of Cyber security Fundamentals like as encryption, firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and security policies.
  5. Knowledge of web technologies, web application architecture, and common web vulnerabilities such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting (XSS), and cross-site request forgery (CSRF) is critical.
  6. Knowledge of wireless technologies, protocols, and security measures.
  7. A basic understanding of cryptographic algorithms, encryption, and decryption methods is important for protecting and analyzing secure communication.
  8. Knowledge of Social Engineering Skills to assess the human element of security and raise awareness about potential threats.
  9. Problem-Solving and Analytical Skills is also necessary.

10. Ethical hackers should have Ethical Mindset to perform legal and responsible hacking practices.

Lesson 11: Some Essential Tools required becoming Ethical Hacker:

  • Scanning Tools: Nmap, Nessus, and OpenVAS for network scanning and vulnerability assessment.
  • Exploitation Tools: Metasploit, Burp Suite, and SQLMap for exploiting vulnerabilities and testing security controls.
  • Packet Sniffers:  Wireshark for capturing and analyzing network traffic.
  • Password Cracking Tools:  John the Ripper, Hashcat, and Hydra for testing password security.
  • Forensic Tools:  EnCase, Autopsy, and Sleuth Kit for digital forensics and incident response.
  • Wireless Hacking Tools:  Aircrack-ng, Wireshark, and Reaver for assessing and securing wireless networks.
  • Web Application Security Tools:  OWASP ZAP, Nikto, and Acunetix for identifying and mitigating web application vulnerabilities.
  • Firewall and IDS/IPS Tools:  Snort, Suricata, and iptables for monitoring and managing network security.
  • Cryptography Tools:  OpenSSL, GPG, and Cryptool for working with cryptographic functions.
  • Operating System Tools:  PowerShell, Linux command-line tools, and system utilities for system-level assessments.

It's important for ethical hackers to stay updated on the latest security trends, vulnerabilities, and tools to effectively safeguard digital assets. Additionally, certifications like Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) and Offensive Security Certified Professional (OSCP) can enhance one's credentials in the field.

Lesson 12: Process of Ethical Hacking:

Process for ethical hacking includes:
  1. Ethical hacker Obtain explicit permission from the organization or individual that owns the system to be tested and also clearly define the scope of the penetration test, specifying the systems, networks, and applications to be assessed.
  2. Ethical hacker Gather information about the target system, including IP addresses, domain names, and network infrastructure. Use passive methods such as searching online or actively querying DNS servers to collect data without directly interacting with the target.
  3. Ethical hacker Identify and map out the network architecture, including IP ranges, subnets, and network devices. Gather information about the organization's infrastructure and its public-facing assets. 
  4. Ethical hacker Use automated tools to actively scan the target for open ports, services, and vulnerabilities. Employ tools like Nessus, Nmap, or OpenVAS to identify potential entry points. 
  5. Ethical hacker Extract more detailed information about the target, such as user accounts, system names, and network resources. Utilize tools like NetBIOS enumeration or LDAP enumeration to gather this information. 
  6. Ethical hacker Evaluate the vulnerabilities identified during scanning to determine their severity and potential impact. Prioritize vulnerabilities based on their risk and potential for exploitation.
  7. Ethical hacker Attempt to exploit the identified vulnerabilities to gain unauthorized access or control over the target system. Use ethical means to demonstrate the impact of vulnerabilities without causing harm.
  8. Ethical hacker assesses the extent of the compromise and gathers additional information. Document the steps taken and the data accessed to provide a comprehensive report to the organization.
  9. Ethical hacker Analyze the findings, including successful exploits, data accessed, and potential impact on the organization. Prepare a detailed report outlining the vulnerabilities, risks, and recommendations for remediation. 
  10. Ethical hacker Work closely with the organization's IT and security teams to address and fix the identified vulnerabilities. Provide guidance on improving overall security posture and implementing best practices.
  11. Ethical hacker Document the entire penetration testing process, including methodologies, tools used, and results. Use the insights gained to enhance security policies, procedures, and infrastructure for ongoing protection. It's crucial to conduct ethical hacking in a responsible and legal manner, following ethical guidelines and respecting the privacy and confidentiality of the organization or individual being tested. Regularly performing penetration tests helps organizations stay proactive in identifying and mitigating potential security risks.

Lesson 13: What are the Key Domains Of Ethical Hacking?

Here are some key domains within ethical hacking: 

  1. Network Security: - Wireless Security: Examining and securing wireless networks to prevent unauthorized access. - Firewall and Router Security: Assessing and securing network perimeter devices. 
  2. Web Application Security: - Web Application Testing: Identifying vulnerabilities in web applications, such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting (XSS), and cross-site request forgery (CSRF). - API Security: Ensuring the security of application programming interfaces (APIs) that enable communication between different software systems. 
  3. System Security: - Operating System Security: Assessing the security of operating systems, including patch management and user privilege management. - Endpoint Security: Evaluating and securing individual devices like computers, laptops, and mobile devices.
  4. Cloud Security: - Cloud Infrastructure Security: Ensuring the security of cloud-based infrastructure and services. - Container Security: Securing containerized applications and environments.
  5. Social Engineering: - Phishing Attacks: Simulating phishing attacks to test the susceptibility of employees to social engineering. - Physical Security Testing: Assessing the physical security of facilities through techniques like tailgating and unauthorized access attempts.
  6. Cryptography: - Encryption Analysis: Evaluating the strength of cryptographic protocols and implementations. - Key Management: Ensuring secure generation, storage, and exchange of cryptographic keys. 
  7. Mobile Security: - Mobile Application Security: Identifying vulnerabilities in mobile apps. - Device Security: Assessing the security of mobile devices and their configurations.
  8. Incident Response and Forensics: - Incident Handling: Developing and testing incident response plans. - Digital Forensics: Investigating and analyzing security incidents to gather evidence and understand the extent of a breach.
  9. IoT (Internet of Things) Security: - IoT Device Security: Evaluating the security of connected devices. - IoT Network Security: Securing the communication between IoT devices and networks.
  10. Red Team vs. Blue Team: - Red Team Operations: Simulating real-world attacks to test an organization's defenses. - Blue Team Defense: Defending against simulated attacks and improving security measures. Ethical hackers often acquire certifications such as Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) or Offensive Security Certified Professional (OSCP) to demonstrate their expertise in these domains. It's important for ethical hackers to stay updated on the latest security threats and technologies to effectively secure systems and networks.

Lesson 14: What is bWAPP?

bWAPP (Buggy Web Application) is a deliberately insecure web application designed for security testing and educational purposes. It provides a platform for security professionals, developers, and enthusiasts to practice and improve their skills in identifying and exploiting web application vulnerabilities. bWAPP contains various security flaws and vulnerabilities that are commonly found in web applications, such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting (XSS), cross-site request forgery (CSRF), and more. Users can use bWAPP to simulate real-world scenarios and test their ability to secure web applications against potential threats. It's important to note that bWAPP should only be used in controlled environments for educational purposes, and not in any production or live systems, as it intentionally includes vulnerabilities that could be exploited if deployed in an insecure manner.

End of Lessons


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