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security exploit

Another term for security vulnerability, a security exploit is an unintended and unpatched flaw in software code that exposes it to potential exploitation by hackers or malicious software code such as viruses, worms, Trojan horses and other forms of malware.

Security exploits may result from a combination of software bugs, weak passwords or software already infected by a computer virus or worm, and these security exploits require patches, or software fixes, in order to prevent the potential for unauthorized access or compromised integrity.

Also see vulnerability scanning and The Difference Between a Virus, Worm and Trojan Horse  in the Did You Know? section of Webopedia.

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