Common Internet Safety Terms

Alex Waller

Some important terms

MousetrappingCommonly used by pornographic sites, this technique keeps visitors from leaving a website by locking them into a window, opening multiple windows on the desktop, or re-launching their website in a winder that can't be closed.

SpywareA type of malware that collects information about users without their knowledge, often to track browsing habits and to create pop-up advertisements.

Browser Hijacking Occurs when Malware or Spyware replaces your browser's home page with its own in order to force more hits to a particular website.

Clickjacking A technique that tricks users into clicking on a malicious link by adding the link to a transparent layer over what appears to be a legitimate web page.

Hoax A email chain letter that warns of impending viruses and tries to scare users into forwarding and continuing the hoax email.

MalwareAn intentionally malicious software or code that is designed to damage your computer or collect information without your knowledge, this also sometimes includes adware and freeware.

VirusA self replicating software program that is designed to infect a computer by rapidly spreading from one file to another causing great harm.

PharmingA technique used to redirect a legitimate website's traffic to another illegitimate website.

Trojan HorseA malware that appears to be benign or desirable and thus tricks the user into allowing the program access to their computer.

SPAMUnsolicited email or junk mail.

Phishing A mail or instant message scam that is disguised to look like official communication from a legitimate website.

More important terms

TrollA person who posts comments just to get a rise out of people and cause a distraction. This person may say something rude, assert incorrect information, or ask questions unrelated to the topic at hand.

AvatarA virtual representation of yourself. The term usually refers to a virtual image.

Flame WarA heated argument in a social media outlet such as a web forum, mailing list or chat room, in which intentionally insulting comments and personal attacks become a focus of conversation.

Screen Name Sometimes called a user name, is a virtual name that is used to identify users of a website where social media is a component. This should not be your real name but you can use a nickname or a pseudonym.

FlamebaitA comment posted by someone trying to provoke a flame, or an angry response.

DoocedOccurs when someone loses their job because of something they posted on a blog or social networking site.

SockpuppetA fake identity that someone creates and uses to deceive others for some kind of personal gain. On most websites it is possible to have more than one account, so it is easy to create several fake identities.

PostsContent that people publish on websites involving social media, such as blogs, newsgroups, and forums. These are available to everyone who has access to the site. You do not always have the option to change or delete it. It is an instantly public representation of you or your online identity.

ChatsLive, online conversations. You can talk with people in rooms or by using an instant messaging service. Unlike having a conversation with someone out loud, everything you write can easily be saved and shared with others. Think before you press send!

MemeSomething that has gone viral, or spread rapidly around the internet, such as a catchphrase, hoax, topic, concept or piece of media. Can you identify some commonly used catchphrases: yolo, hashtag