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What is Hacking and Who Are Hackers?

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While the pejorative connotation of the word “hacker” is not widely acknowledged, it is widely used and is also a source of heated debate. Many people object to the word being appropriated from their own cultural jargon, preferring to self-identify as “hackers” and advocate alternative terms. Some, however, have come to accept the term’s use as a part of everyday conversation. Cybersecurity expert and owner of the site of best vpn Florian Berg reports that using the term in both senses is misleading for the general public.

Blue Hat

What is Blue Hat Hacking? A blue hat hacker is a professional who studies software or security gaps and finds solutions for these vulnerabilities. They are often invited by companies to conduct research and report vulnerabilities, but are not employed by the company. These individuals are similar to the Script Kiddies, who use hacking to gain attention. However, the term “Blue Hat” is used to refer to both types of hackers. This article will explain the difference between the two.

 

A blue hat hacker is an independent computer security expert who has a reputation for being skilled and knowledgeable. He or she may be a former employee or a self-employed hacker. However, a blue hat hacker’s motivation is not necessarily malicious. Oftentimes, a blue hat hacker has some sort of vendetta against an organization. Blue Hat hackers may begin as “Script Kiddies” but become focused on vengeance or revenge. These hackers do not necessarily want to learn more about cybersecurity and are purely interested in the reward of being known for their skills.

Grey Hat

The term Grey Hat hacker is often used to describe cybercriminals who break into systems without authorization. These hackers will generally do so in an effort to prove their abilities. Once they have gained access, they will notify the system or network owner or vendor of the problem. They may also provide information to other hackers as a means of sabotage. Grey Hat hackers are not considered ethical and are often punished by law. However, the work they do is often useful to the company that they are hacking.

 

While there are many examples of hackers who commit illegal activity, there are a few notable exceptions. For example, Khalil Shreateh, an unemployed computer security researcher, recently hacked Facebook to force the company to fix a vulnerability in their software. Shreateh’s efforts resulted in Facebook fixing the vulnerability, but not before he publicly revealed it. The company had denied the issue, but he was still able to secure the site. Grey Hat hackers were not compensated for this work because the company has a white hat program in place.

Homeless Hacker

Known as the Homeless Hacker, Adrian Lamo had no fixed address and lived in the streets of different cities. He often slept on the couch and in abandoned buildings and would conduct his missions from Internet cafes and dial-up connections. His laptop was an old Toshiba, with missing keys. He would offer his services to secure websites but refused to accept payment. When a security hole was found, he waited until the security firm patched it, alerting the media, and waiting to see if the security flaw was fixed.

 

In 2002, Lamo broke into the network of the New York Times, stealing the personal information of 3,000 op-ed contributors. He was arrested and charged with federal computer crimes. He appeared in the Manhattan district court last week. Though he still has no fixed address, he frequently travels on Greyhound buses, sleeps on couches of friends, and camps in abandoned buildings. And his name may seem a bit strange at first, but you can’t really blame him.

White Hat

While hackers are generally responsible for breaking into computer systems, white hats do more than just break into computer systems. They also raise awareness about security problems, often by using their hacking skills to locate high-profile systems and uncover vulnerabilities. In many cases, this type of hacking is a valuable resource for companies, as it gives them information that they may not otherwise have. The following are some examples of notable white hat hackers. However, it is important to note that not all white hats are ethical.

 

While many white-hat hackers are sanctioned by government agencies and business organizations, some are still subject to law enforcement scrutiny. A case in point is the hacker Marcus Hutchins, who was accused of creating a banking-system intrusion Trojan called Kronos. This exploit helped bring down the WannaCry malware attack, but Hutchins denied that he had any involvement with it. Regardless, his code may have been appropriated by black hat hackers.

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