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Version 2.0

Cybersecurity Style Guide

Symbols and Numbers

0-day (n. or adj.)

A “zero-day” or “oh-day” finding is one that has not been previously reported. In formal writing, it’s better to use zero-day finding, previously undisclosed vulnerability, or publicly undisclosed vulnerability.

1080i, 1080p

HD video modes that describe the frame resolution and scan type (interlaced or progressive scan, respectively). Pronounced “ten-eighty-eye” and “ten-eighty-pea.” Do not spell out.


Password management software.


A hacker magazine founded in 1984. Also a series of local clubs.


2FA or TFA (n.)

Two-factor authentication. Spell out on first use.


Triple DES. A symmetric key block cipher. DES is pronounced as letters or “dezz.”


3G, 4G (adj. or n.)

Third- and fourth-generation communications technology. Cell phone network options. Do not spell out.


An API management platform.


A website for trolls and memes that birthed Anonymous and Rickrolling.


An open source file archiver.

8.3 filename (n.)

A shortened filename. Also called a short-name.


The asterisk.


The at sign.


The exclamation point, exclam, or bang.



The forward slash. Avoid using the forward slash in formal writing to compare two things outside of set phrases like and/or, client/server, and TCP/IP.


The pound sign, hash, or hashtag. Only called hashtag when tagging something. This character and [ ] are sometimes used interchangeably and are pronounced as “sharp” in programming language names.


The tic. Not an apostrophe.

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