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IT Jargon Buster

Defining Technical IT Jargon

IT Jargon Buster

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AES - Advanced Encryption Standard
The Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) is a specification for the encryption of electronic data established by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in 2001. This is a leading security standard that is widely recognised.
AI - Artificial Intelligence
AI is the ability of a computer program or a machine to think and learn. It is also a field of study which tries to make computers "smart". They work on their own without being encoded with commands. John McCarthy came up with the name "Artificial Intelligence" in 1955.
API - Application Programming Interface
An API is a connection between computers or between computer programs. It is a type of software interface, offering a service to other pieces of software.
A form of spyware that displays unwanted advertisements on a computer.
Anti-virus software
Also known as AV software. This is the software that is used to check for known viruses.
Hardware or software to verify users and obtaining access to data.


A means by which authentication can be verified, like Face recognition, Fingerprints to obtain access to your laptop or mobile phone.
BIOS - Basic Input/Output Systems
This is often the firmware used to start up hardware like a laptop. BIOS also provides details about the hardware for the operating system.
The most basic unit of information within computers, The name of a contraction of Binary Digit. A bit represents a logical state with one of two possible values, either “1” or “0”
This is a decentralised digital currency, without a central bank or single “administrator” BitCoin can be sent direct between two users on peer-to-peer bitcoin networks.
This is often the term used for software that is shipped with new computers. These types of software often start as free trial
The process where a computer starts up. “Boot up”
Boot Password
Some computers can be setup to have a boot (start-up) password that must be entered before the computer will be usable.
Bluetooth – BT
A method of connecting two devices over a short distance to exchange data.
This is the name given to a software application that runs the same task over and over again via the internet. Typically, bots perform tasks that are simple and repetitive, much faster than a human could
A botnet is a number of Internet-connected devices, each of which is running one or more bots. Botnets can be used to perform Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attacks, steal data, send spam, and allow the attacker to access the device and its connection. The owner can control the botnet using command and control (C&C) software. The word "botnet" is a portmanteau of the words "robot" and "network". The term is usually used with a negative or malicious connotation.
We use web browsers like, Edge, Chrome, Safari, Opera to access and “browse” the internet
Brute Force Attack
Basic concept. Brute-force attacks work by calculating every possible combination that could make up a password and testing it to see if it is the correct password
Buffer overflow
Buffer overflow is an anomaly that occurs when software writing data to a buffer overflows the buffer’s capacity, resulting in adjacent memory locations being overwritten. In other words, too much information is being passed into a container that does not have enough space, and that information ends up replacing data in adjacent containers.
In the computer world, a bug is an error in a software program. It may cause a program to unexpectedly quit or behave in an unintended manner. For example, a small bug may cause a button within a program's interface not to respond when you click it.
BYOD - Bring your Own Device
Bring your Own Device is the term used when a company allows its staff to use their own device for work.
This is a unit of digital information that is most commonly consisting of eight bits.
Big Data
Extremely large data sets that may be analysed computationally to reveal patterns, trends, and associations, especially relating to human behaviour and interactions.


This is a hardware or software component that stores data so that future requests for that data can be served faster; the data stored in a cache might be the result of an earlier computation or a copy of data stored elsewhere
Cloud or “Cloud hosted” means that the service or product is being hosted on the internet rather than physically in your office You can get “Public Cloud” and “Private cloud” options
To change information on a computer so that it is wrong and cannot be used: Most of the data on the hard drive was corrupted when the power went out
CPU - Central Processing Unit
This is the “Brain” chip within the computer. The CPU performs basic arithmetic, logic, controlling and input/output operations.
Cybercrime is a crime that involves a computer and a network. The computer may have been used in the commission of a crime, or it may be the target. Cybercrime may harm someone's security and financial health
CE - Cyber Essentials
Cyber Essentials is a United Kingdom government information assurance scheme that is operated by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC). It encourages organisations to adopt good practice in information security. Cyber Essentials also includes an assurance framework and a simple set of security controls to protect information from threats coming from the internet.
CE+ - Cyber Essentials Plus
As CE, but this is the next step, which has deeper set of requirements
C Record
A Canonical Name record (abbreviated as CNAME record) is a type of resource record in the Domain Name System (DNS) that maps one domain name (an alias) to another (the canonical name). 


Digital Transformation
Digital transformation is the integration of digital technology into all areas of a business, fundamentally changing how you operate and deliver value to customers. It's also a cultural change that requires organizations to continually challenge the status quo
DoS - Denial-of-service attack (DoS attack)
DoS is a cyber-attack in which the perpetrator seeks to make a machine or network resource unavailable to its intended users by temporarily or indefinitely disrupting services of a host connected to the Internet. Denial of service is typically accomplished by flooding the targeted machine or resource with superfluous requests in an attempt to overload systems and prevent some or all legitimate requests from being fulfilled.
DDoS - Distributed Denial of Service attack
Similar to a DoS attack, however the deliberate overloading of a service is coordinated using many infected devices. These infected devices are often called a “BotNets” see BotNets for further details
The part of the World Wide Web that is only accessible by means of special software, allowing users and website operators to remain anonymous or untraceable.
Time during which a machine, especially a computer, is out of action or unavailable for use
A distinct subset of the internet with addresses sharing a common ending or under the control of a certain organization or individual.
DNS – Domain Name Server
The system by which internet domains names and addresses are tracked and regulated.
Data Breach
A security violation in which sensitive, protected or confidential data is copied, transmitted, viewed, stolen or used by an unauthorised individual.
A businesses’ ability to respond and recover from something that affects the business negatively.
DPA (Data Protection Act 1998)
The Data Protection Act 1998 sets out the legal basis for handling, processing and protecting personal data in UK.
A way in which an encrypted/coded message is made readable. Digital Signature Data that is used to identify and authenticate the sender of an email for example.
DLP - Data Loss Protection
A set of tools and process to ensure data is not lost, misused or accessed by unauthorised personnel.
DKIM - Domain Keys Identified Mail
An email authentication method made to detect forged senders addresses in emails, mainly to detect phishing or spoof emails.
DPI - Dots Per Inch
A measurement used to describe the number of dots that can fit, in a straight line, within the span of an inch.


Email Filter
Software that scans incoming / outgoing email for SPAM or virus
The process of converting data into cipher text (a coded format) to prevent it from being understood by an unauthorised party
EOL - End Of Life
Relates to a product or service reaching the end of support
EOS - End of Support
The product or service is no longer supported by the vendor
EU - End User
This is the person using the software , service or product


A network security system that monitors and controls incoming and outgoing network traffic based on predetermined security rules.
Fingerprint recognition
Verification of a person by comparing their fingerprint with previously recorded samples.
FTP - File Transfer Protocol
A method of transmitting data over the internet – this version is not “secured” Also see SFTP
FTTH - Fibre To the Home
The installation of fibreoptic for the central point directly to the home.
FTTP - Fibre To the Premises
The installation of fibreoptic from the central point directly to the building.
FQDN - Fully Qualified Domain Name
A domain name that specifies its exact place in the hierarchy of the domain naming system.


A device that is used to connect two different devices, especially a connection to the internet.
Gateway Firewall
A network security system that monitors and controls incoming and outgoing traffic, through the gateway, based on predetermined security rules through the gateway.
Graphics Interchange format. This is an image file format
Gb - Gigabit
A unit of measurement equal to 109 bits.
GB - Gigabyte
A unit of measurement equal to 109 bits. Although more common that a Gigabit.
GUI - Graphical User Interface
A visual way of interacting with a computer using items such as windows, icons and menus and is used by most modern operating systems.


HA - High Availability
A characteristic of a system that aims to ensure an agreed level of operational performance this is usually uptime for higher-than-normal periods.
A person how uses a computer to gain unauthorized access to data.
Hard Refresh
It clears your browser cache for a specific page and allows you to refresh the most recent version of the page.
Hypertext markup language – a standardized system for tagging text files to achieve font, colour, graphic and hyperlink effects on the world wide web.
Hypertext Transfer Protocol - An application layer protocol for distributed, celebrative, hypermedia information systems.
HTTP Secure - it is a protocol where encrypted HTTP data is transferred over a secure connection.
HDD - Hard Disk Drive
An electro-mechanical data storage device.
High-Definition DVD - A format for storing data and playing it back in high definition.
High-Definition Multimedia Interface – a digital interface used to transmit audio and video data through a single cable.
HID - Human Interface Device
A method by which humans interact with an electronic information system either by imputing data or providing and output.
Hz - Hertz
Commonly used to measure the computer monitors refresh rate or the computer processors speed.


IaaS - Infrastructure As a Service
Cloud computing severs where companies rent or lease servers for compute or storage in the cloud.
Identify Theft
Any time that a criminal gets hold of a piece of your information, and then uses that information for their own personal gain, it can be considered to be identity theft. Criminals can even use seemingly harmless pieces of information, such as your date of birth, to commit identity theft
Incognito Window
An internet browser setting that stops the browser from storing history or cookies. Different web browsers make difference references. In Microsoft Edge web browser this is called “In Private window” In Google Chrome web browser this is called “Incognito window”
Information Commissioner
The title given to a government regulator in the fields of freedom of information and the protection of personal data.
Information Security
The state of being protected against the unauthorized use of data.
International Standard organisation (ISO) developed ISO27001 as a framework for organisations to follow so that they could demonstrate they have followed an approved best practice in relation to information Security.
Internet Service Provider – This is the company that provides subscribers with access to the internet.
IP Address
A unique string of characters that identifies each computer using the internet protocol to communicate over a network.
IP - Intellectual Property
It is a category of property that includes intangible creations of the human intellect. Some of the different types of intellectual properties include copyright and patenting.
IPAM - IP Address Management
Its a means of planning, tracking and managing the IP address space used in a network
IPS - Intrusion Prevention System
A system where the main function is to identify any suspicious activity and either detect or allow or prevent the threat.
IMAP - Internet Message Access Protocol
It is an internet standard protocol used by email clients to retrieve email from a mail sever.
IPTV - Internet Protocol Television
It is the delivery of Tv content over and internet protocol (IP) networks.
IPv4 - Internet Protocol Version 4
It is the fourth version of the internet protocol. (See IP)
IPv6 - Internet Protocol Version 6
It is the sixth version of the internet protocol. (See IP)
Input / Output
Internet Of Things - IoT
The interconnection via the internet of computing devices embedded in everyday objects, enabling them to send and receive data.
IM - Instant Message / Instant Messaging
A system of sending a message over the internet quickly from one computer to another.
IDS - Intrusion Detection System
A system that looks for either signatures of unknown attacks or deviations from normal activity.


J2EE - Java 2 Enterprise Edition
It is a form of name of Java EE, Java’s platform for severs.
J2ME - Java 2 Micro Edition
It was a type of embedded system for mobile phones, such as PDA’s, tv set top boxes and printers.
JBOD - Just a Bunch Of Disks
It is a storage structure that includes multiple disk drives within one single storage encloser.
JDK -Java Development Kit
It is an implementation of one of the java platforms, standard edition, java platform, enterprise edition, java platform or micro edition platforms.
JEE - Java Enterprise Edition
It is a collection of java API’s owned by oracle that software developers can use to write sever-side application.
JRE - Java Runtime Edition
It is a part of java development kit that contains an orchestrates the set of tools and minimum requirements for executing java application.
Java Script - JS
A computer programming language commonly used to create interactive effect within web browsers.
This is a type of graphical image file.


A computer program that records every keystroke made by a computer user, especially in order to gain fraudulent access to passwords and other confidential information.
A panel of keys that operate a computer.
A unit of measurement equal to 103 bits.
Kbps - Kilobit Per Second
It is a specific data transfer rate.
KB - Kilobyte
a unit of measurement equal to 1,024 bytes.
Knowledge Base
A store of data or information that available to draw on.
Khz -Kilohertz
A measure of frequency equal to 1,000 cycles a second.
KVM - Keyboard, Video, Mouse
It is a hardware device that connects a keyboard, video display and mouse to multiple computers. It allows a user to control more than one computer with one input/output.


Log File
A file that contains a log of event, which have been logged by the computer
LAN - Local Area Network
A computer network that links devices within the same building or adjacent buildings.
LCD - Liquid Crystal Display
A form of visual display used in electronic devices, in which layers of liquid crystal are sandwiched between two transparent electrodes. Used in monitors, display screens and TVs
LDAP - Lightweight Directory Access Protocol
It is part of X.500, a standard for directory services in a network. A directory tells the user where in the network something is located.
Light-Emitting Diode – Type of technology that would be used in monitors and display screens.
LPT - Line Print Terminal
It is the usual designation for a Parallel port connection to a printer or other device connected to a personal computer.


MAC - Mandatory Access
It refers to a type of access control by which the operating system or data base constrains the ability of a subject to access or generally perform some sort of operation on and object or target.
MAC - Media Access Control
It is a sublayer of the data link layer in the seven-layer OSI network reference model. MAC is responsible for the transition of packets to and from the network interface card, and to and from another remotely shared channel.
MBR - Master Boot Record
It is a special type of boot sector which is located at the beginning of the partitioned computer storage devices such as internal hard drives, external hard drives, removeable disks and more.
Mb - Megabit
A quantity used to describe data transfer rates it equates to 1,000 kilobits.
MB - Megabyte
A unit of measurement equal to 106 bytes.
A software specifically designed to disrupt, damage or gain unauthorized access to a computer of system.
MX Record
Mail Exchange – The mail system responsible for excepting mail on behalf of a domain name.
MIMO - Multiple-Input Multiple-Output
It is an antenna technology for wireless communication in which antennas are used at both sources and destinations.
Megahertz a unit of frequency equal to 1,000,000 hertz.
MDI - Multiple Document Interface
It is a graphical user interface in which multiple windows reside under one parent window.
Multimedia Message Service - It is a standard way to send messages with multimedia content to and from a mobile phone or over a cellular network.
MIDI - Musical Instrument Digital Interface
It is a protocol designed for recording and playing back music on digital synthesizers that is supported by many makes of personal computer sound cards.
MNG - Multiple-image Network Graphics
It is a graphics file format; its specification is publicly documented and there are free software reference implications available.
Apple Quicktime Multimedia File - It is a multimedia development, storage and playback technology from Apple. Quicktime files combine sound, text, animation and video in a single file.
MPEG - Motion Pictures Experts Group
It is an alliance of working groups of ISO and IEC that set the standard for media coding, including completion coding of audio, video, graphic and geonomics data, transition and file formats for various applications.
MPLS - Multiprotocol Label Switching
It is a routing technique in Telecommuncation that directs data from one node to the next based on short paths named rather long network addresses, thus avoiding complex lookups in a routing table and speeding traffic flows.
MS-DOS - Microsoft DOS
It allow the user to navigate, open and other wise manipulate file on their computer from a command line instead of a GUI like windows.
MS - Microsoft
A company that deals with many Tech related products.
MS - Memory Stick
A flash drive and type of memory card.
MSI - Microsoft Installer
It is a software component and application programming interface of windows used for the instillation of maintenance and removal of software.
MTA - Microsoft Transfer Agent
It administer a direct stock purchase plan and a dividend reinvestment plan for the company.


NAC - Network Access Control
It is an approach to computer security that attempts to unify endpoint security technology such as antivirus, intrusion prevention, system authentication and security enforcement.
NAP - Network Access Protection
It is a Microsoft technology for controlling network access of a computer, based on its health.
NAS - Networking Attached Storage
It removes the responsibility of file servicing from other severs on the network. They typical provide access to files using network file sharing protocols such as, NFS, SMB or AFP. It became a popular method of sharing files among multiple computers.
NAT - Network Address Translation
It is a method of remapping one IP address space into another by modifying network address information in the IP header of packets while they are in transit across a traffic routing device.
NFC - Near Field Communication
It is a short-range wireless connectivity standard that used magnetic field induction to enable communication between devices when they are touched together or brought within a few centimetres of one another.
NFS - Network File System
It is a distributed file system protocol allowing a user on a client computer to access files over a computer network much like local storage is accessed.
NIC - Network Interface Controller / Card
It is a computer hardware that connects a computer to a computer network.
NIST - National Institute of Standards and Technology
It is a measurement standards laboratory, a non-regulatory agency working under the U.S department of commerce.
NTP - Network Time Protocol
It is a network protocol for clock synchronization between computer systems over packet-switched, variable-latency data networks.


ODBC - Open Database Connectivity
It is a standard application programming interface for accessing database management systems.
OEM - Original Equipment Manufacturer
It is a company whose goods are used as components in the products of another company, which sell the finished item to users.
OS - Operating System
A low level software that supports a computers basic functions, such as scheduling tasks and controlling peripherals.
OS - Open Source
It is a software where the original source code is made freely available and may be redistribute and modified.
Organic Light Emitting Diode - It is a LED in which the filament is made of an organic electroluminescent.
OTP - One Time Password
It is a password that is only valid for one login session or transaction on a computer system.
Open Sourced
It is Something that people can modify and distribute because its design is publicly available.


Patch / Patching
It is a software update comprised of code inserted into the code of an executable programme. Paches are normally temporary fixes in-between big updates.
It is the fraudulent practice of sending emails pretending to be reputable companies and getting the user to disclose their personal information like passwords and credit card information.
Private Cloud
The private cloud is defined as computing services offered either over the Internet or a private internal network and to selected users only instead of the general public. Also called an internal or corporate cloud.
P2P – Peer-to-Peer
It is a network in which each computer can act as server for the others, allowing shared access files without need of a centre sever.
Penetration Testing
It is an appropriate method for identifying the risks present on a specific operational system consisting of products and services from multiple venders.
It is a file format used for lossless image compression. This means that when the file is decompressed for viewing no layers or detail is lost.
It is a simple, standardised method of delivering emails. It a mail sever that receives mail and filters them into appropriate user folders.
Public Cloud
The public cloud is defined as computing services offered by third-party providers over the public Internet, making them available to anyone who wants to use or purchase them.


Random Access Memory – It is a fast and temporary data storage space that computers use to store data in the moment.
A type of malicious software designed to block usage of a system till a sum of money is paid, it usually does this by encrypting the data.
It is a network device that forwards data packets between computer networks. They perform the traffic directing functions on the internet. Data sent through the internet such as email or web pages are in the form of packets.


SaaS - Software as a service
It is a part of cloud computing. This replaces downloading the hardware directly onto the user's computer and instead give them access the files that are storge in the cloud.
It is unsolicited internet content that is typical sent in bulk for advertising purpose sent by and Unknown user.
It is a version of FTP that encrypts data transfers, helping keep your passwords secure and your sessions private


Trojan Horse
It is a piece of malware that is designed to look like a helpful tool for your computer but is coded to harm your computer such as destroying files.
TB - Terabyte
It is a measurement of storage capacity and is equal to 1012 bytes
Tcl - Tool command language
It is a powerful script language with programming features. It is available across Unix, Windows and Mac OS platforms. It is used for web and desktop applications, networking, administration, testing, rapid prototyping and scripted application and graphical user interfaces.


UX - User Experience
It is applied to anything that can be experienced, be it webpages, a coffee machine, or a visit to the supermarket.
UAC - User Account Control
It is a security feature of windows which helps prevent unauthorised changes to the operating system.
UI - User Interface
It is the point of human-computer interaction and communication in a device. This can include display screens, keyboards a mouse and the appearance of the desktop.


VPN - Virtual Private Network
It is a private network you can connect a device to hide information about your device like IP Location and other personal information.
It is a malicious software program loaded into a user's computer without their knowledge and performs malicious acts.
VAPT - Vulnerability Assessment and Penetration Testing
VAPT is a term that describes security testing that is designed to both identify and help address vulnerabilities.


It is a wireless networking device that allows computer and other devices to communicate over a wireless connection.
WLAN - Wireless LAN
It is a wireless computer network that links two or more devices using wireless communication to form a local area network.
WAP - Wireless Access Point
It uses a radio transceiver to allow wireless connection to a network. The WAP creates its own wireless network, which devices connect to.


XP - Cross-platform
It is the ability to run software over multiple different operating systems, over different programming environments or even over different types of physical hardware devices.
XMMS - X multimedia system
It is any computer delivered system that present information through different medias that may include text, sound, video computer graphics and animation.
XMS - Extended Memory Specification
It is a specification describing the use of IBM PC extend memory in real mode for storing data, but not for running executable codes in it.


YARN - Yet Another Resource Negotiator
It was introduced to operating systems to ensure scalability, performance and resource utilization.
YAST - Yet Another Setup tool
It is a configuration tool for the openSUSE Linux operating system. It is a Ret Hat package manager-based OS networks.
YAML is a human-readable data-serialization language. It is commonly used for configuration files and in applications where data is being stored or transmitted. YAML targets many of the same communications applications as Extensible Markup Language (XML) but has a minimal syntax which intentionally differs from SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language)


It is a common type of file compression. Zipping one or more files creates a compressed archive the takes up less disk space that the uncompressed version.
ZISC - Zero Instruction Setup Computer
It is a computer architecture based on two fundamentals pattern matching and absence of micro instructions.
ZIF - Zero Insertion Force
It is a type of electronic connector that requires very little force for insertion.

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