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University of VictoriaIntroduction to IT English
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Glossary

Unit 9 IT Lesson Terms

back door

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Software that lets other people control your computer over the Internet.

Example
It is important to have software on your computer that can detect a back door so that other people won't take control of your computer.

backups

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Copies of files you want to keep safe.

Example
There are many ways to create backups on your computer, such as saving your files on another hard drive or to a zip drive.

denial of service

phrase

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Using a vulnerability to crash someone’s computer or network.

Example
A denial of service means that a hacker found a vulnerability on your computer and was able to hack into it.

dialer

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Software that uses your dial-up modem to make expensive long-distance phone calls.

Example
If a dialer uses your dial-up modem, it can make expensive long-distance phone calls and you will have to pay the charges for them.

firewall

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Software that blocks unwelcome network traffic.

Example
It is useful to have a firewall to protect the information stored on your computer.

intruder

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Someone who tries to break into your computer or tamper with your work. Also known as a “hacker”.

Example
Intruders can steal private information and files from your computer if they are able to break into it.

password

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
A combination of letters or other symbols that only you are supposed to know.

Example
Before you can use the computer, you will need to type a password.

secure

adjective

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
When no one can read or change the files on your computer without permission.

Example
It is important to have a secure Internet connection before giving out any personal information such as credit card numbers.

security

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Practices that keep the information on your computer safe.

Example
Government offices use security to make sure that all of their information is safe.

spyware

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Software that monitors what you do and sends reports to someone else over the Internet.

Example
It is important to have software on your computer that can detect spyware so that your privacy is not invaded.

trojan

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Dangerous software that pretends to be normal software to trick you into using it or giving it to your friends. Trojans do not copy themselves.

Example
A trojan can destroy information stored on your computer.

update

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
A fix for software, often created to remove a vulnerability. Also known as a “patch”.

Example
It is important to install all virus updates so that your computer is not vulnerable to attack.

virus

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
A software program that secretly tries to copy itself to other computers.

Example
A virus can attack information on your computer and destroy it.

virus scanner

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
Software that detects viruses.

Example
Every computer should use a virus scanner so that that a virus does not destroy the information stored on the computer.

vulnerability

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
A mistake in a software program that makes your computer less secure. Also known as an “exploit”.

Example
When hackers find a vulnerability on a computer, they attack it.

worm

noun

Unit 9 — IT Lesson

Definition
A virus that knows how to copy itself across networks.

Example
A worm can damage information on many computers by copying itself across the network.