Cyber Attacks: Active and Passive

By: Arya Brijith, International Center for AI and Cyber Security Research and Innovations (CCRI), Asia University, Taiwan,sia University, Taiwan,


In this article, we shall discuss about cyber-attacks. Mainly, the active and passive attacks.

Keywords Cyber-attacks, threat, active, passive.


Cyber-attacks are a broad category of malicious actions intended to jeopardize data security and digital systems. It can be carried out for a variety of reasons, such as surveillance via data breaches or financial gain via ransomware. Cybercriminals’ techniques also change with technology; therefore, it is critical for people and organizations to constantly strengthen their defences and be alert to new threats to protect sensitive data and preserve the integrity of digital infrastructure. Cyber-attacks can be classified into two separate categories: passive and active attacks. Passive attacks deal with information gathering and active attack operations tries to disrupt a well-established organization by altering the data.[1]

Passive attacks

The goal of passive attack is to covertly obtain data without changing the original material. These assaults aim to get access and data without causing any long-term damage to the system. Passive attacks include things like listening in on unencrypted network communications and analysing traffic to identify patterns. They are comparable to digital surveillance as they anonymously collect information.

Active attacks

Active attacks, on the other hand, involve the deliberate alteration or disruption of data and systems and go beyond simple monitoring. These attacks seek to disrupt, damage, or obstruct regular system operations in addition to obtaining information. They aim to alter the receiving network’s configuration or functionality. Man-in-the-middle attacks, which intercept and maybe influence communications between two parties, and denial-of-service attacks, which render a network useless due to excessive traffic, are two examples.


The distinction between passive and active attacks draws attention to the complexity of cybersecurity threats, demanding a comprehensive defence strategy to deal with both implicit and explicit attempts to compromise digital integrity and data breaches. Also, it is necessary for users to beware of such attacks.


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Cite As

Brijith A. (2023) Cyber Attacks: Active and Passive, Insights2Techinfo, pp.1

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