How Cybersecurity Really Works Cover

How Cybersecurity Really Works

A Hands-On Guide for Total Beginners
by Sam Grubb
May 2021, 216 pp.

Look Inside!

How Cybersecurity Really Works Chapter 3, Page 50 Chapter 6, Page 111Chapter 6, Page 117 Chapter 7, Page 134 How Cybersecurity Realy Works Mockup


How Cybersecurity Really Works is the perfect introduction to cybersecurity. Whether you’re a computer science student or a business professional, it will teach you the basics without all the jargon.

This beginners guide covers different types of attacks, common tactics used by online adversaries, and defensive strategies you can use to protect yourself. You’ll learn what security professionals do, what an attack looks like from a cybercriminal’s viewpoint, and how to implement sophisticated cybersecurity measures on your own devices.

In addition, you’ll find explanations of topics like malware, phishing, and social engineering attacks, coupled with real-world examples and hands-on exercises to help you apply what you’ve learned. You’ll explore ways to bypass access controls, prevent infections from worms and viruses, and protect your cloud accounts from attackers.

You’ll also learn how to:

  • Analyze emails to detect phishing attempts
  • Use SQL injection to attack a website
  • Examine malware from the safety of a sandbox environment
  • Use the command line to evaluate and improve your computer and network security
  • Deploy encryption and hashing to protect your files
  • Create a comprehensive risk management plan

You can’t afford to ignore cybersecurity anymore, but attackers won’t wait while you read a long technical manual. That’s why How Cybersecurity Really Works teaches you just the essentials you need to think beyond antivirus and make the right decisions to keep the online monsters at bay.

Download the Chapter 4 maliciouspdf.pdf file on GitHub here.
WARNING: The file uses some real exploit code but is rendered completely benign. This allows for more authentic analysis. Still, it may set off Endpoint Security Software and should be used with caution. Download at your own risk.

Author Bio 

Sam Grubb is a cybersecurity consultant for a managed service provider that works with a large variety of clients. He has six years of experience teaching cybersecurity to both adults and teenagers and holds several cybersecurity certifications, including the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) certification.

Table of contents 

Chapter 1: An Introduction to Cybersecurity
Chapter 2: Attack Targets on the Internet
Chapter 3: Phishing Tactics
Chapter 4: Malware Infections
Chapter 5: Password Thefts and Other Account Access Tricks
Chapter 6: Network Tapping
Chapter 7: Attacks in the Cloud
Chapter 8: Wireless Network Pirating
Chapter 9: Encryption Cracking
Chapter 10: How to Defeat Black Hats

View the Copyright Page
View the detailed Table of Contents
View the Index


"An excellent resource . . . The chapters scaffold in a beautiful fashion leaving the reader with a concrete foundation of cyber knowledge. Sam’s ability to explain abstract or complex concepts in a simplistic, digestible, and visual way is a major strength of this book. Novices or anyone interested in learning about cybersecurity, this is the book for you!"
—Dr. Pauline Mosley, Pace University, Professor of Information Technology

"This book is an excellent and practical introduction to cybersecurity for a beginner. . . . Sam’s examples are clear, and will be relevant to those looking for their first job in cybersecurity, pivoting to security from another field, or who just want to improve the security of their home network. . . . I enjoyed reading it."
—Jamie Winterton, Director, Strategy at Global Security Initiative at Arizona State University

“Our absolute favorite cybersecurity book . . . if you’re a total beginner looking to learn the ins and outs of cybersecurity, you’ve found your book right here.”
—Geena SQL,

“An excellent book for beginners because it takes the mystery out of doing cybersecurity right.”
—Giovanni Hale, Goodreads Reviewer

“Easy to read . . . Useful for undergraduate CyberSec courses.”
—Dr. Larry Leibrock, Professor at Idaho State University