(also backdoor attack)
An undocumented way to bypass existing cybersecurity measures and gain access to the target system. While viruses and malware can introduce backdoors into a system as part of an escalating cyberattack, software and hardware makers sometimes install backdoors into their own products to retain access in edge cases (for example, when users lock themselves out or the device holds data required for a criminal investigation.)
Backdoors are dangerous because they allow criminals to infiltrate systems without detection. An attacker using a backdoor avoids tripping any alarms and is treated like a regular (and, in many cases, high-level) user. This means that hackers can not only steal data. They can also compromise the system’s security measures against future attacks.
2005: Soly BGM issued CDs containing a copy protection rootkit that installed a backdoor on users’ devices.
2014: SerComm was suspected of introducing a backdoor to the Netgear and Linksys routers that the company assembled.
2014: A backdoor was discovered in Samsung’s mobile devices (including the company’s line of Galaxy phones.)