Computer hacking

Computer hacking is the practice of modifying computer hardware and software to accomplish a goal outside of the creator’s original purpose. People who engage in computer hacking activities are often called hackers. Since the word “hack” has long been used to describe someone who is incompetent at his/her profession, some hackers claim this term is offensive and fails to give appropriate recognition to their skills.

During the 1960s, the word "hacker" grew to prominence describing a person with strong computer skills, an extensive understanding of how computer programs worked, and a driving curiosity about computer systems. Hacking, however, soon became nearly synonymous with illegal activity. While the first incidents of hacking dealt with breaking into phone systems, hackers also began diving into computer systems as technology advanced. Hacking became increasingly problematic during the 1980s. As a result, the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act was created, imposing more severe punishments for those caught abusing computer systems. In the early 1980s, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) made one of its first arrests related to hacking. A Milwaukee-based group known as the 414s were accused of breaking into 60 different computer systems including the Memorial SloanKettering Cancer Center and the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Later that decade, the infamous Kevin Mitnick was arrested and sentenced to one year in jail for damaging computers and stealing software. He was arrested again in 1995 for computer fraud and put in jail for hacking Motorola Inc., Sun Microsystems Inc., NEC Corp., and Novell Inc. to steal software, product plans, and data. Mitnick eventually cost the firms a total of roughly $80 million.

and Amazon. Under the terms of his parole. they abided by a code of ethics that looked down upon destroying. although there are many older hackers as well.000 hacker attacks.S. During 1995 alone. those who considered themselves true hackers—computer programming enthusiasts who pushed computer systems to their limits without malicious intent and followed a hacker code of ethics—grew weary of the media's depiction of hackers. malicious hackers became even more destructive. costing millions and leaving online shoppers doubtful about security on these sites. eBay. including those of the U. As technology advanced and business transactions conducted over the Internet increased. Computer hacking is most common among teenagers and young adults. Department of Justice. and his computer use was limited to that which was supervised by a teacher at school. the media continued to use the word hacker despite the fact that although most early hackers believed technical information should be freely available to any person. however.S.. were hacked. AT&T Corp. Many hackers are true technology buffs who enjoy learning more about how computers work and consider computerhacking an “art” form. U. the U. They often enjoy programming and have expert-level skills in one particular program. moving. Popular Web sites such as Yahoo!. and the CIA.As negative publicity surrounding hackers continued to grow. as well as for breaking into both Harvard's and Yale's university computer systems. America Online. Air Force. For these . a 16-year-old Canadian boy operating under the name Mafiaboy was arrested for these attacks. were also attacked by hackers and defaced. Defense Department computers dealt with 250. several hacker groups coined the term 'cracker' in 1985 to define a person who broke into computer systems and ignored hacker ethics. As a result. or altering information in a way could cause injury or expense. Mafiaboy was not allowed to use the Internet or go into stores that sold computers.S. Federal World Wide Web sites. and the Korean Atomic Research Institute all fell prey to hackers in the early 1990s. Griffith Air Force Base.

is another hacker well of computer hacking. change a corporation’s financial data. Since a large number of hackers are self-taught as part prodigies. accomplishments outside DIFFERENT TYPES OF HACKING ACTIVITY . a free UNIX-like operating system. break security codes to gain unauthorized network access. Hackers who are out to steal personal information. since many of the skills developed from hacking apply to more mainstream pursuits. not an opportunity to harm others. or conduct other destructive activities are sometimes called “crackers. If you are interested in protecting your home computer against malicious hackers. For example. Shawn known Fanning. of their some corporationsactually employ computer hackers technical support staff. It’s a chance to demonstrate their abilities. investing in a good firewall is highly recommended. In comparison to those who develop an interest in computer hacking out of simple intellectual curiosity. former hackers Dennis Ritchie and Ken Thompson went on to create the UNIX operating system in the 1970s. These individuals use their skills to find flaws in the company’s security system so that they can be repaired quickly. some hackers have less noble motives. Microsoft offers a number of free security patches for its Internet Explorer browser. In many cases. This system had a huge impact on the development ofLinux. For example. It’s also a good idea to check your software programs for updates on a regular basis. for the his creator of Napster.individuals. this type of computer hacking helps prevent identity theft and other serious computer-related crimes. Computer hacking can also lead to other constructive technological developments. computer hacking is a real life application of their problemsolving skills.” This type of computer hacking can earn you a trip to a federal prison for up to 20 years.

For example. Hacking typically involves compromising the security of networks. However. It can also cause a computer to crash by utilizing all of the computer's resources. The most popular forms of network hacking are denial of service (DoS) attacks and mail bombs. stolen. A group of teens in Wichita. for example. DoS attacks are designed to swamp a computer network. Hackers that create viruses. causing it to crash. Application hackers also sometimes attack the program itself in an attempt to remove certain security features. or erased. Mail bombs act in a similar fashion. Application hackers break security on application software—software including word processing and graphics programs—in order to get it for free. hackers have also developed new skills that allow them to break into more complex systems. or creating malicious programs such as viruses. and the damage to individuals. but attack the network's mail servers. Kansas. files can be removed. its Web server was bombarded with fake requests for Web pages. When eBay was attacked in February 2000. logic bombs. Once a network is hacked. Network hackers also try to break into secure areas to find sensitive data. hacked into AOL and stole credit card numbers that they then used to buy video games. and Trojan horses are involved in perhaps the most malicious hacking activities. worms. One way they gain access to software that requires a serial number for installation is by setting up a serial number generator that will try millions of different combinations until a match is found. businesses. businesses have been forced to increase spending on network security. e-mail systems were inundated with the "ILOVEYOU" and the "Love Bug" viruses in May of 2000. which overloaded the site and caused it to crash. . breaking the security of application software. and institutions was estimated at roughly $10 billion. A virus is a program that has the potential to attack and corrupt computer files by attaching itself to a file to replicate itself.As the cost of hacking attacks continues to rise.

or logic bomb. and Computers can change your life for the better. Taylor quotes Steven Levy when describing the hacker ethic as: 1. In July of 2001. Members of the network hacking scene are often being stereotypically described as crackers by the academic hacker subculture. Hacker attitudes The term "hacker" has a number of different meanings. such as degrees. and IIS 4. it is often synonymous with a computer intruder. logic bombs are designed to attack when triggered by a certain event like a change in date. race. Worms attack networks in order to replicate and spread. 3. age. a worm entitled "Code Red" began attacking Microsoft Internet Information Server (IIS) systems. 2. a Trojan horse is a program that appears to do one thing. it can release a virus. leaving the phrase "Welcome to www. upon execution. a view harshly rejected by the academic hacker subculture itself. The worm infected servers running Windows NT 4. Windows 2000.Similar to viruses. not bogus criteria You can create art and beauty on a computer. In a computer security context. Mistrust authority--promote decentralization. yet see themselves as hackers and even try to include academic hackers in what they see as one wider hacker culture. 4. Instead of a hacker – cracker dichotomy. but really does something else.0 and defaced Web sites. or position. Windows XP. Hackers should be judged by their hacking. or try to exclude some specific group with which they do not agree. All information should be free. worm. While a computer system might recognize a Trojan horse as a safe program.worm. rather than revealing their real names. Several subgroups with different attitudes and aims use different terms to demarcate themselves from each other. Paul A. they give more emphasis to a spectrum of . Hacked by Chinese!" Finally. It is common among hackers to use aliases for the purpose of concealing identity.

or governmental establishments. or many other types of crime. Their intentions are to cause harm to social. or more generally hackers with unlawful intentions. Will be considered a cyberterrorist by some. often frankly admitted. Cyberterrorist A Cyberterrorist uses technology to commit terrorism. identity theft. ideological. political. religious. In contrast to the academic hackers. they usually reserve the term cracker to refer to black hat hackers. Grey hat A grey hat hacker is a hacker of ambiguous ethics and/or borderline legality. Script kiddie A script kiddie a non-expert who breaks into computer systems by using pre-packaged automated tools written by others. This can mean taking control of a remote computer through a network. vandalism (malicious destruction). intellectual property theft. Hacktivist A hacktivist is a hacker who utilizes technology to announce a political message. White hat A white hat hacker breaks security for non-malicious reasons. . or software cracking. grey hat. Will be considered as a hacktivist by some.different categories. black hat and script kiddie. Black Hat A black hat hacker is someone who subverts computer security without authorization or who uses technology (usually a computer or the Internet) for terrorism. such as white hat (“ethical hacking”). credit card fraud.

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