Inability to resist a hazard or to respond when a disaster has occurred.

Usually people will require or desire the opposite, avoiding or reducing vulnerability of a system.

A software vulnerability is a defect in software that could allow an attacker to gain control of a system. These defects can be because of the way the software is designed, or because of a flaw in the way that it’s coded.


We might differentiate different types of vulnerability:

  • physical vulnerability,
  • economical vulnerability,
  • social vulnerability and
  • environmental vulnerability.

Vulnerability is related to the characteristics and circumstances of a community or system, these characteristics and circumstances make community or system susceptible to hazard and cause loss. There are many aspects of vulnerability, arising from various physical, social, economic, and environmental factors.

Risk Information Handbook