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Version 2.0

Cybersecurity Style Guide


L10n (n.)

Short for localization. 10 represents the 10 letters removed from the middle of the word. Pronounced as “L-ten-N.”



Short for Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP, which were its original four components. It’s a software bundle. Do not spell out.

LAN, LANs (n.)

Local area network. Pronounced as “lan.” Do not spell out.

LanMan hash (n.)

Short for LAN Manager hash. We prefer to write it out or abbreviate to LM hash.

LAN Turtle

A tool used during security assessments to obtain shells.

LARP, larping (n. or v.)

A live action role-playing game. Pronounced as “larp.”



Password management software.



A document preparation system. Pronounced as “lay-teck” or “luh-teck.”

LCD, LCDs (n.)

Liquid crystal display. Pronounced as letters. Do not spell out.


Lightweight Directory Access Protocol. Pronounced as “L-dap.” Spell out on first use.


LDAP Admin

A tool used during security assessments.

leaf certificate (n.)

Also known as an end-entity certificate.


leak, leaked, leaking (v. or n.)

Informal. In formal writing, use exposed, disclosed, obtained, or stolen instead.

LED, LEDs (n.)

Light-emitting diode. Pronounced as letters. Do not spell out.

Leet or 1337 or Leetspeak or l33tsp34k

A coded form of online writing featuring codified typos and a combination of numbers and punctuation. Leet means elite.

Ex: H4X0R, n00b, pr0n, pwn, teh

legacy (adj.)

Outdated equipment and software that continues to be used by a company or industry for consistency reasons.

lessons learned (adj. or n.)

A debriefing, as in “a lessons learned call.” Do not capitalize or hyphenate. Corporate jargon; use sparingly.

-level (adj.)

Always hyphenate in adjectives.

Ex: high-level risk, lower-level role


Local file inclusion. A web application vulnerability. Spell out on first use.


Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual. For more guidance on inclusive language, please consult


A free, open source software suite forked from OpenOffice.

life hack (n.)



An Apple connector standard.

Ex: Lightning cable, Lightning port

lightspeed (n.)

Used to describe rapid space travel in sci-fi stories.

light wallet or lightwallet (n.)

Cryptocurrency storage that doesn’t download the whole blockchain.

like (v. or n.)

A show of approval on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Use quotes around the term in formal writing.

Ex: This post has 10 likes.

Like button (n.)

A social media feature popularized on Facebook.

limit (v.)

To control the scope, impact, or types of attacks. Also try filter, narrow, or omit.

Line or LINE

A popular Japanese chat app.

line numbers (n.)

Use the normal font, as in “line 1337 of the code.” Don’t use commas in line numbers.




linked list (n.)

A data structure built on sequences of nodes.


lint (v.), linter (n.)

A tool that analyzes code for errors. Originates from the Unix program lint.

Ex: Use a linter to lint your code.


An open source OS created by Linus Torvalds. Pronounced as “linn-ucks” or “line-ucks.” In the free software community, it is specifically called GNU/Linux.


A programming language. Short for LIST Processor. Pronounced as “lisp.” Do not spell out.


listicle (n.)

An article in the form of a list, as in “Top 10 Worst Hacking Scenes in Movies.”

listserv (n.)

The company is called LISTSERV. The generic term is listserv or email list.


Link-Local Multicast Name Resolution. A modern Windows protocol. Do not spell out.

LM hash (n.)

LAN Manager hash. Spell out on first use.


LMS, LMSes (n.)

Learning management system. Spell out on first use.


LNK, .lnk file

Pronounced as “link.” Sometimes written as LiNK. Be consistent in your usage.



A hostname that always refers to the computer you’re using. The localhost IP address is always

lock picking (n.)

The skill of picking locks.

logged-in (adj.)

Ex: a logged-in user


Low Orbit Ion Cannon. An old-school way to crowdsource a DoS attack. Pronounced as “low-ick.”

lowercase (adj. or v.)

Better to write “put in lowercase,” but if needed, “lowercased” is OK.

low-privilege (adj.)

Describes an account or user with limited permissions. To avoid ambiguity, use the name of the role or permission instead of this term on first mention.

low-res (adj.)

Low-resolution, as in images or video. Pronounced as “low-rezz.” Informal.



Local Security Authority Subsystem Service. Pronounced as “L-sass.”


Long Term Evolution. A high-speed wireless communication standard. Do not spell out.


Long-term support. LTS versions of software are intended to last longer than normal. Spell out on first use.

Lucius Fox

A character from the Batman canon, played by Morgan Freeman in Christopher Nolan’s movie trilogy. Lucius Fox is an inventor and runs WayneCorp. Because of his defensive hacking skills, we use his name in our company name.

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