Monday, April 11, 2011

Who is Hacker..??? & Hacker Ethic...

A hacker is a person who breaks into computers and computer networks, either for profit or motivated by the challenge or for the purpose of getting illegitimate access to resources.
Hacker ethic is the generic phrase which describes the values and philosophy that are standard in the hacker community.

Hacking was all about exploring and figuring out how the wired world worked. John Draper, a Vietnam vet, makes a long-distance call for free by blowing a precise tone into a telephone that tells the phone system to open a line.

An ethical hacker is a computer and network expert who attacks a security system on behalf of its owners, seeking vulnerabilities that a malicious hacker could exploit. To test a security system, ethical hackers use the same methods as their less principled counterparts, but report problems instead of taking advantage of them. Ethical hacking is also known as penetration testing, intrusion testing and red teaming. An ethical hacker is sometimes called a white hat, a term that comes from old Western movies, where the "good guy" wore a white hat and the "bad guy" wore a black hat.
One of the first examples of ethical hackers at work was in the 1970s, when the United States government used groups of experts called red teams to hack its own computer systems. According to Ed Skoudis, Vice President of Security Strategy for Predictive Systems' Global Integrity consulting practice, ethical hacking has continued to grow in an otherwise lackluster IT industry, and is becoming increasingly common outside the government and technology sectors where it began. Many large companies, such as IBM, maintain employee teams of ethical hackers.

Steven Levy, in the book Hackers, talks at length about what he calls the ``hacker ethic.'' This phrase is very misleading. What he has discovered is the Hacker Aesthetic, the standards for art criticism of hacks. For example, when Richard Stallman says that information should be given out freely, his opinion is not based on a notion of property as theft, which (right or wrong) would be an ethical position. 

Then, like Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, dabbled in phone phreaking. Although there were numerous offenses, Mitnick was ultimately convicted for breaking into the Digital Equipment Corporation's computer network and stealing software.

Hackers have their own ‘code of honour’- the ‘Hacker Ethic’. The original Hacker Ethic was sort of an impromptu, informal ethical code developed by the original hackers of MIT and Stanford (SAIL) in the 50s and 60s.

The question of hacker ethics was brought to the fore during the trial of US Judge Ronald C Kline in 2002-2005. Kline stood accused of downloading child pornography to his home and courthouse computers. The evidence against him hinged on the credibility of a Canadian hacker named Bradley Willman, who claimed to have stolen an electronic diary from his computer.


Akash Mondal

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