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Net Glossary

Net GlossaryFind out what it all means!

Please select terms by clicking on the letter of the alphabet to jump to that part of the page



Anonymity - A recipient cannot reply to the message and that email sender's identity (identity meaning the user's real email address or other identifying information such as IP address data) is not and can not be known


Anonymizer - An anonymizer is essentially a shield between your computer and the Internet that relays Web traffic through an intermediary server. It hides personally identifying information--such as IP address, browser software used, surfing patterns, etc. -from any Web site you visit, and prevents sites from adding any cookies or other files to your computer.


Anti Virus Software - Detects and removes computer viruses.



Bandwidth - The rate at which information travels through a network connection, usually measured in bits per second, kilobits (Kb - thousand bits) per second, or megabits (Mb - million bits) per second.


Bit - The smallest element of computerized data.


Blacklist - A list of inappropriate or harmful email addresses (spam) or Web sites used by web blocking or filtering products such as Netintelligence


Blocking software - Computer programs, like Netintelligence, that filter content from the Internet and block access to some Web sites or content based on specified criteria.


Bookmark - A file within a browser in which an Internet user can save the addresses of interesting or frequently used Web sites, so that they are readily available for re-use.


Browser - A program that allows a user to find and interact with material on the World Wide Web such as Microsoft Internet Explorer or Mozilla FireFox.


Browser hijacker - A common Spyware program that automatically changes your web browser's home page


Bulletin board - An area of a Web site where users can post messages for other users to read.


Byte - A unit of measure of computer memory. A byte generally represents one character, such as a letter from the alphabet, and is made up of eight bits. (See "Bit")


Cache - A file on the hard drive in which a Web browser stores information such as addresses, text, and graphics from recently visited Web sites, making it easier and faster for the user to revisit a site.


Chat - A feature offered by many online services or Web sites that allows participants to "chat" by typing messages which are displayed almost instantly on the screens of other participants who are using the chat room. Usually the participants remain anonymous, using nicknames or pseudonyms to identify themselves online.


Chat room - The name given to a place or page in a Web site or online service where people can "chat" with each other by typing messages which are displayed almost instantly on the screens of others who are in the "chat room." Chat rooms are also called "online forums."


Client-based filter - A software program like Netintelligence that a user installs on his or her own computer to monitor Internet use, block access to specific types of material, monitor kids chat conversations etc.


Computer Information - Information about the computer system that the individual uses to access the network -- such as the IP number, domain name, browser type or operating system.


Content - The actual text of a communication or information sent. Includes text of e-mails, bulletin board postings, chat room communications, files and graphics. Content does not include routing information, the date, time, or subject of the message, or other transactional data.


Cookie - A piece of information sent by a Web server to a user's browser. (A Web server is the computer that "hosts" a Web site, and responds to requests from a user's browser.) Cookies may include information such as login or registration identification, user preferences, online "shopping cart" information, etc. The browser saves the information, and sends it back to the Web server whenever the browser returns to the Web site. The Web server may use the cookie to customize the display it sends to the user, or it may keep track of the different pages within the site that the user accesses. Browsers may be configured to alert the user when a cookie is being sent, or to refuse to accept cookies. Some sites, however, cannot be accessed unless the browser accepts cookies.


Cyberspace - Refers to the various information resources that are available through computer networks and the Internet, as well as to "communities" which have developed through their common use of such resources, and to the culture which is developing in such electronically connected communities.


Default - a setting automatically chosen by a software program or machine that remains until the user specifies another setting.


Directories - Indexes of Web sites, organized by subject


Disclosure - Refers to companies' practice of making your personal information available to third parties, e.g., marketing lists, other organizations that provide similar services, etc.


Discussion group - Online area, like an electronic bulletin board, where users can read and add or "post" comments about a specific topic. Users can find discussion groups, also referred to as "discussion boards," for almost any topic. (See also "Newsgroups")


Domain name - Domain names are the alphabetic names used to refer to computers on the Internet. A Web site address, including a suffix such as .com, .org, .gov, or .net The suffix indicates what type of organization is hosting the site.


Download - to transfer (copy) files from one computer to another.


DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) - A high speed always on internet connection, which utilises standard phone lines.



E-mail (Electronic Mail) - Messages sent through an electronic (computer) network to specific groups or individuals.


Encryption - A means of making data unreadable to everyone except the recipient of a message.


Ethernet - The most common technology for connecting computers together in a network.


End User Licensing Agreement - Generally, the agreement by which the vendor allows the computer user to use their product or service.


Executable file - A file in a format that the computer can directly execute. Unlike source files, executable files cannot be read by humans.



FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) - Pages which list and answer the questions most often asked about a web site, company or product.


File Sharing - Accessing files on one computer from a different computer


Filtering software - Software that screens information on the Internet and classifies its content such as Netintelligence. Filtering software usually allows the user to block access to certain kinds of content.


Firewall - Hardware or software that secures computer files by blocking unauthorized access.


FTP - (File Transfer Protocol) - A way of transferring files over the Internet from one computer to another.


Hacker - Someone who ‘breaks’into your computer (or into a network of computers) over the Internet.


Hardware - The mechanical devices that comprise a computer system, such as the central processing unit, monitor, keyboard, and mouse, as well as other equipment like printers, modems and speakers.


Hidden dialers - Programs that are often unwittingly downloaded that will use your computer to silently dial expensive premium rate numbers which show up on your phone bill, with extortionate charges attached.


HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) - The standard language that computers connected to the World Wide Web use to communicate with each other.


Hyperlink - An image or portion of text on a Web page that is linked to another Web page, either on the same site or in another Web site. Clicking on the link will take the user to another Web page, or to another place on the same page.



IM or Instant Message - IM (Instant Message) - Technology similar to that of chat rooms, which notifies a user when a friend is online, allowing them to "converse" by exchanging text messages.


Internet - A global connection of computer networks, also referred to as the "Net," which share a common addressing scheme.


Intranet - A private network inside a company or organization, which uses software like that used on the Internet, but is for internal use only, and is not accessible to the public. Companies


IP (Internet Protocol) - The computer language that allows computer programs to communicate over the Internet.


IP Address (or IP number) - A set of four numbers, each between zero and 255, separated by periods (eg: The IP address uniquely identifies a computer or other hardware device (such as a printer) on the Internet.


IRC (Internet Relay Chat) - A protocol and a program type that allows participants to "chat" online in a live forum that usually centers on a common interest. IRC is the earliest form of online chat.


ISP (Internet Service Provider) - A company that sells direct access to the Internet and other services such as hosting and email.



Keystroke logger - Hardware device or a software program that records each keystroke made on a particular computer.


Keyword - A word that is entered into the search form or search "window" of an Internet search engine to search the Web for pages or sites about or including the keyword and information related to it.



Location Data - Information that can be used to identify an individual's current physical location and track him/her as the location changes.



Modem - A hardware device that allows computers to communicate with each other by transmitting signals over telephone lines, enabling what is called "internet access."


Monitoring software - Software products that allow a parent or career to monitor or track the Web sites that an end user visits or reads, without necessarily blocking access.


Multimedia - Information presented in more than one format, such as text, audio, video, graphics, and images.



Newsgroups - Discussion groups on the Internet. Newsgroups are classified by subject matter and can include many diverse topics. Participants in a newsgroup conduct discussions by posting messages for others to read, and responding to the messages posted by others.



Operating System - The main program that runs on a computer. Major operating system include UNIX, Windows, Mac OS, and Linux.



Peer-to-peer - Any network in which all the computers are of equal capacities and capabilities, as opposed to a client-server network, in which one machine is intended to serve the needs of others. File-sharing networks are generally constructed with a peer-to-peer (also known as P2P) architecture.


Phishing - An identity theft scam in which criminals send out spam that imitates the look and language of legitimate correspondence from e-commerce sites. The fake messages generally link to Web sites which are similarly faked to look like the sites of the respected companies. On the sites, you are directed to enter your personal information for authentication or confirmation purposes. The information, when submitted, however, goes to the thieves, not to the "spoofed" company.


Plug-in - A small piece of software that enriches a larger piece of software by adding features or functions.



Pop-up ads - Term for unsolicited advertising that appears as its own browser window.


Posting - Sending a message to a discussion group or other public message area on the Internet.



Search engine -A tool that enables users to locate information on the World Wide Web. Search engines use keywords entered by users to find Web sites which contain the information sought.


Server - A special computer connected to a network that provides (serves up) data. A Web server transmits Web pages over the Internet when it receives a Web browser's request for a page. A server can also be called a host or node.


Software - A computer program, which provides the instructions which enable the computer hardware to work.


Spam - Unsolicited "junk" e-mail sent to large numbers of people to promote products or services.


Spider - A software program that "crawls" the Web, searching and indexing Web pages to create a database that can be easily searched by a search engine.


Surf - To search for information on the Web in a random, non-linear way.



TCP/IP - (Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol) - The protocols, or conventions, that computers use to communicate over the Internet.


Trojans - Programs designed to allow third parties unauthorized access to the computer systems they infect. Trojans may also be used in order to exploit a computer system to send unsolicited email.



Uninstall - The process of removing a program from a computer. Some applications must be removed with an uninstall program, which removes all files that were installed with the program and restores any modifications made to system files.


Upload - Copying or sending files or data from one computer to another. A Web developer, for example, could upload a document to a Web server. (See also "Download")


URL - (Uniform Resource Locator) - The World Wide Web address of a site on the Internet. The URL for the Internal Revenue Service, for example, is (See also "Domain name")



Virus - A program that is loaded onto your computer unbeknownst to you. Viruses can make copies of themselves, quickly using up all available memory. Some viruses can transmit themselves across networks.



Web - The World Wide Web. An Internet system to distribute graphical, hyper-linked information, based on the hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP). The World Wide Web is also known as WWW or W3.


Web-based chat - Chat rooms that are found in Web sites, which allow people to chat with each other using their browsers.


Whitelist - A list of 'good' or appropriate email addresses or Web sites.


Worm - A program that reproduces itself over a network, usually performing malicious actions, such as using up the computer's resources and possibly shutting the system down.





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