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Active Attack

An attack in which the attacker seeks to alter the system used, not just to learn information as with a “passive attack”. This usually results in a manipulation or unauthorized download of files.


An attempt to gain unauthorized access into a system in order to alter or learn information about the system being used.

Ad Blocker/Killer

A program that helps to prevent popup advertisements from appearing on your screen.

Administrative Security The basic requirement of security for a network of users or computer system.

Automatically displays or downloads advertisements to a computer, usually as a popup. Adware by itself is harmless, but can be coupled with spyware or software that illegally obtains information about the user's computer.


A message that notifies the computer user of a security measure.


A software or service that helps prevent unsolicited mail and stops the spammer from keeping email addresses on the spam list.

Application Level Gateway

A firewall system or proxy server that monitors traffic between the host or trusted server and an un-trusted server. It ensures that the information passing through is authorized by the computer user.


A file that can be added to an e-mail, blog, or other online device such as documents, pictures, or songs. Exercise caution with any unknown attachments as they may contain viruses.

Automated Information System (AIS)

A connection of a system of computers, hardware, or software to an information processing device that does work like communication, computation, or dissemination of information.

Back Door

A hole in the security of a computer system by which normal authorization of use can be bypassed. This could happen because of an installed program or software.

Blacklisting Software

A type of software that blocks specified harmful sites from your computer.

Blocking Software

A software that blocks harmful websites or incoming data from online.


An online diary or log which can include pictures, links, or other forms of media. It is updated frequently and sometimes organized by specific subjects, such as politics, news, or pop culture.


A way to save a website in your browser’s toolbar for future use.


A violation of the security of a network or computer system.


A program that allows users to view web pages like Firefox or Safari.

Buffer Overflow

When more data is put into the buffer or a holding area than can be processed. An overflow can cause a computer crash or infiltration by an unwanted user.

Bug An unwanted program or hardware that damages a computer’s ability to function.

Real-time communication in which individuals can send and receive messages instantly. Chats are a component of instant messaging.

Chat Acronym

An acronym used to communicate phrases. i.e. LOL (laugh out loud), ASL (age/sex/location), BRB (Be right back), etc.

Chat Room

An interactive forum where individuals can talk in real-time. Many chat rooms are themed by subjects to discuss, but they can also be formed to talk informally, with strangers or with friends.

Click-reload A popup that opens when you click on a link which at the same times reloads more popup windows.

These are files that store information about what is typed on the Internet, such as usernames, passwords, or phone numbers that can be enabled or deleted.

Cyberbullying Using the Internet to intimate another person such as through email, social media, or instant messaging.
Cyberspace Commonly known as the internet, it is a web of computers and systems that interact online.

Terms that can refer to the online enticement of children; threatening messages, harmful gossip, or sexual solicitation.

Domain Name

A name the represents the Internet Protocol (IP) address of a website. i.e. is a domain name.

Download Information received online or from other computers that you can view or save.

A service that allows people to send messages with text, pictures, files, or sound to other people around the world. Popular email servers are gmail, yahoo, and hotmail.

Email Worm A harmful, self-replicating program which can spread over computer networks through email.

Icons or keyboard combinations that represent facial expressions. They can be sent via email, messaging, or social media. Examples  -_-

File-sharing Program

A program that allows multiple users to exchange files, such as pictures, songs, or even other programs. Exercise caution when downloading shared files as some may contain viruses or illegal material.

Filtering Software Software that screens unwanted Internet content.

A device or wall that separates permitted users and information from denied access. This prevents unwanted information like spam and viruses as well as unwanted users from infiltrating the system.


A hardware that controls internally some other device. Examples of firmware are keyboards, hard disks, or memory cards.

Flaming Sending offensive messages to others on the Internet.

Computer software that is available for use at no cost. Sometimes the software has user restrictions such as a time period it can be used or does not function as fully as the paid software.

Gamer Someone who plays online computer or video games.
Geolocation Services

A service that shares a user’s location with their friends or with other users. Some examples include Facebook Places or Foursquare.

Grooming Known as the process a predator uses to try and lure youth through compliments or gifts.
Hacker A person who hacks into a computer system illegally.
Hardware A general term for equipment that can be held/used by hand such as floppy disks, hard drives, or CD's.

A list of recently viewed or visited web pages. It's important to check your children’s website history to see what sites they have visited.

Homepage The main web page set up in your browser when you first open it.

An image or text that connects one web page to another or can also be used to access pictures, sound bites, or files.

Icons Pictures that represent the programs or files on your computer.
Instant Messaging

A service that allows people to send and get messages instantly. Examples include AIM, Windows Messenger, or Yahoo Messenger.

Internet Service Provider (ISP) A company that provides Internet access to customers, like Cox or AT&T.
IP Address

An Internet Protocol (IP) address is a numeric label given to identify devices that use ISPs for communication. They can be given temporarily or “loaned” out by ISPs.

IP Splicing/Hijacking An action in which an unauthorized user hacks an IP address to use the host’s server.
Key A symbol or sequence of symbols applied to text in order to encrypt or decrypt.
Local Area Network (LAN)

A computer network that interconnects computers in a limited area such as a home, school, computer lab, or office building. The positives of LANs verses a Wide Area Network (WAN) is that they can transfer higher amounts of data in a smaller geographic area.

Monitoring Software

Products that allow individuals to track what web sites or emails are being visited or viewed by other users. This is an important software to ensure internet safety for children.

Mouse Trapping

A commonly used technique by pornography sites where a user gets trapped in a website. A user clicks on a website that opens other undesirable windows with illicit or unsolicited material.


Short for “Internet etiquette,” it can be an unspoken or spoken list of guidelines that define courtesy and proper behavior over the internet.

Passive attack

At attempt to break into a computer system to learn unauthorized information. Opposed to an “active attack” in which the system is actually altered.


An online scam in which a user is given a seemingly valid website but is actually a ploy to get the user’s personal information.


An online scam that uses email to "fish” for a user’s private information by imitating another company. The scammers will make a mock website that appears to be a real company but instead takes your credit card information or any other private information given by interacting with the fake company.

Phreaking The skill of cracking the phone network.
Piracy Illegally downloading copyrighted software, music, or movies.

A plug in will allow your computer to access information it couldn’t on its own, such as obtaining media files with a Flash player or QuickTime.

Podcast An audio show that broadcasts over the web music, lectures, book readings, speeches, etc.
Popup A new browser window that appears unrequested on your screen, usually an advertisement.
Post To leave a message on a bulletin board or social networking site.
Profile A personal homepage where users can share their information to others via social media. For example, Facebook and MySpace require users to create a profile.

A specification of rules that computers and related devices must follow in order to communicate over a shared network.

Proxy Server A firewall that monitors the traffic between servers or users based on rules for filtering or specified protocol.
RDF Site Summary (RSS) A web feed format that allows new content to be viewed immediately.
Search Engine

A program that searches information on the Internet by looking for specific keywords and returns a list of information found on that topic. I.e. Google

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) A way of increasing the traffic that goes to a web page by inserting desirable key words.

The sending or posting of nude or partially nude images. It can also include sending sexually illicit text messages to another person. Be sure to check youth’s texting for such material.

Smart Phone

A cell phone that has capabilities similar to computers and are usually managed by applications. Applications are downloading that allow the user to access documents, social media, email, etc.

Snarf To grab a large document or file for the purpose of using it with or without the host’s permission.
Social Networking Site

A website specifically focused on the building of social networks for business, personal, political, or any other unspecified reasons.


A collection of computer programs and related data that provide instructions for telling a computer what to do and how to do it. Unlike hardware, software cannot be held or used by hands.

Spam Unwanted e-mail from someone you don't know, usually trying to sell something.
Spimming Using instant messaging to send individuals unsolicited material, usually pornography sites.
Spoofing Pretending to be someone else in order to perform an illegal action.

A type of malware, or malicious software, which collects information about users without their knowledge. Spyware is also very difficult to detect.


The exchange of video clips, sound, or other types of media over the Internet. With streaming, the user can view or listen to the file without it downloading completely. Hulu, an online television website, utilizes this technique for displaying videos.

Temporary Internet Files

A folder on your computer that will show you every site visited. Be sure to check these files to ensure that children have not visited illicit web pages.

Texting Sending or receiving instant messages via phone, sometimes over the Internet.

A row across the top of a screen with icons that when clicked, activate certain functions of the program. I.e. in Microsoft Word the toolbar displays ways to alter font, such as italics, bold, or underline.

Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)

The primary communications protocol that is used on the Internet.

Virtual Private Network (VPN) A network that primarily uses internet to connect computers to a central network.

A computer program that can destroy files or can make your computer "crash." Viruses can be sent through email or any other type of file-sharing. Be sure to download anti-virus software and monitor files received in order to prevent system infiltrations.

Web 2.0

The evolution of the Internet which allows users to create their own content and put it on the Web, not just the downloading of content by users. Sites like Facebook and YouTube are examples of Web 2.0.

Webcam Cameras set up with or into computers that can create videos or photos to be shared via the Internet.
Whitelisting A form of filtering that allows only a preapproved list of sites that are considered appropriate for children.
Wide Area Network (WAN)

A physical network that provides capabilities for a number of independent devices to communicate with each other over a shared transmission in geographic areas.

World Wide Web (WWW)

Interconnected servers and clients using the same “hypertext” (i.e. HTML). This is metaphorically called the “Web”.


A program that replicates from machine to machine across network connections which in turn infects networks and information systems as it spreads.




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