Thursday, March 24, 2011

"hacking" vs h4cking vs hacking

This is something I've always found irritating. Y'know when a friend leaves his Facebook on and his friend goes and posts something stupid as his status? People now days refer to that as hacking. When some jerk literally just guesses your password or finds where you wrote it down and uses it, people refer to it as hacking.

When people are playing video games and someone does something out of the rules of the game such as teleporting when the game doesn't allow it, people generally refer to it as hacking. Honestly though the truest meaning of hacking is what the programmer did making the scripts so that the A-hats who want to cheat can cheat. This missuse of the term hacking I'm fine with, because actual hacking did occur down the line.

The situation I mentioned of a person simply guessing someone else's password is not hacking unless that person actually broke into a database or system where that password was located, OR if they used a program/made a program to automatically figure out the password. That is simply called password stealing or account stealing. Throwing the term hacking out there doesn't make you sound cool it makes you sound retarded.

Now that that's out of the way, hacking isn't always a bad thing. For example: Pwn2Own is a hackers convention/contest basically. The goal of the event is for companies to submit their products with a prize and have hackers compete to hack the product. Why would a company want people to do this? The answer is simple. If these hackers find a new vulnerability in the software the company will be able to patch that hole in their security before bad hackers get their hands on it. There are several types of hackers but the most common two names we use for hackers are white hat hackers and black hat hackers. White hat hackers are generally good hackers, they generally use their skills in order to help fix security issues in all sorts of software.
These guys are very skilled and can work their way into almost any network or system quickly and virtually undetected. These are the guys who generally go to Pwn2Own for competitions, earning around 15-50 grand for each exploit they uncover. Black hat hackers are the bad guys you generally think of when you hear the term hacker. They create viruses, worms, trojans, malware, all that fun stuff, they steal bank account info, if they want to hurt someone and do it badly they can use the internet to destroy the person. Black hat hackers are equally smart as white hat hackers, the only difference is their morals.

Also to answer a quick question I hear a lot "Why do hackers create viruses?". Black hat hackers create malware like viruses and worms as a bragging thing really. Many black hat hackers are very egotistical. People often think of hackers as complete geeks who never get out of the house, that may be true in some cases but hackers generally have the urge to show off their skills and try to 1 up each-other.  It's like with sports only not very mature.

Thank you for reading I hope I've taught you a little something.

White = good hackers
black = bad hackers

Don't think you'll forget that tid bit of info.

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