What is Hacking?

Hacking is the identification of vulnerabilities in a computer system or network in order to take advantage of safety to get access to personal or corporate data. A computer hacking example might be: use a password cracking technique to have computer system access.

Computers are now required to run a successful company. Isolated computer systems are not sufficient; they must be networked for contact with external companies. That makes them known and hacked outside the world. System hacking implies utilizing computers to conduct fraudulent activities including fraud, invasion of privacy, robbery of corporate and personal data, etc. Cybercrimes cost millions of dollars annually to numerous organizations. Companies should be protected from such assaults

Who is a Hacker?

A hacker is a someone who uncovers and uses access to the weaknesses in computer systems and/or networks. Hackers are generally qualified computer programmers with computer security skills.

Types of Hackers

Hackers are categorized according to their activities’ intentions. The following list classifies types of hackers according to their intent:

SymbolDescription
White hat hackerEthical Hacker (White hat): A security hacker who gains access to systems with a view to fix the identified weaknesses. They may also perform penetration Testing and vulnerability assessments.
Black hat hackerCracker (Black hat): A hacker who gains unauthorized access to computer systems for personal gain. The intent is usually to steal corporate data, violate privacy rights, transfer funds from bank accounts etc.
Grey hat hackerGrey hat: A hacker who is in between ethical and black hat hackers. He/she breaks into computer systems without authority with a view to identify weaknesses and reveal them to the system owner.
Script kiddiesScript kiddies: A non-skilled person who gains access to computer systems using already made tools.
HacktivistHacktivist: A hacker who use hacking to send social, religious, and political, etc. messages. This is usually done by hijacking websites and leaving the message on the hijacked website.
PhreakerPhreaker: A hacker who identifies and exploits weaknesses in telephones instead of computers.

Ethical hacking

Introduction of Cybercrime

Cybercrime is the use of computers and networks to carry out illicit actions, such as computer virus dissemination, online bullying, unauthorized transmission of electronic funds, etc. The majority of cybercrime hacks occur over the internet, and cybercrimes are carried out via SMS and online chat programs on mobile phones.

Type of Cybercrime

The following list presents the common types of cybercrime:

  • Computer Fraud: Intentional deception for personal gain via the use of computer systems.
  • Privacy violation: Exposing personal information such as email addresses, phone number, account details, etc. on social media, hacking a websites, etc.
  • Identity Theft: Stealing personal information from somebody and impersonating that person.
  • Sharing copyrighted files/information: This involves distributing copyright protected files such as eBooks and computer programs etc.
  • Electronic funds transfer: This involves gaining an un-authorized access to bank computer networks and making illegal fund transfers.
  • Electronic money laundering: This involves the use of the computer to launder money.
  • ATM Fraud: This involves intercepting ATM card details such as account number and PIN numbers. These details are then used to withdraw funds from the intercepted accounts.
  • Denial of Service Attacks: This involves the use of computers in multiple locations to attack servers with a view of shutting them down.
  • Spam: Sending unauthorized emails. These emails usually contain advertisements.

What is Ethical Hacking?

Ethical Hacking In 8 Minutes | What Is Ethical Hacking? | Ethical Hacking  Explanation | Simplilearn - YouTube

Ethical Hacking is identifying weakness in computer systems and/or computer networks and coming with countermeasures that protect the weaknesses. Ethical hackers must abide by the following rules.

  • Get written permission from the owner of the computer system and/or computer network before hacking.
  • Protect the privacy of the organization been hacked.
  • Transparently report all the identified weaknesses in the computer system to the organization.
  • Inform hardware and software vendors of the identified weaknesses.

Why Ethical Hacking?

  • Information is one of the most valuable assets of an organization. Keeping information secure can protect an organization’s image and save an organization a lot of money.
  • Fake hacking can lead to loss of business for organizations that deal in finance such as PayPal. Ethical hacking puts them a step ahead of the cyber criminals who would otherwise lead to loss of business.

Legality of Ethical Hacking

Ethical Hacking is legal if the hacker abides by the rules stipulated in the above section on the definition of ethical hacking. The International Council of E-Commerce Consultants (EC-Council) provides a certification program that tests individual’s skills. Those who pass the examination are awarded with certificates. The certificates are supposed to be renewed after some time.