As promised we have been spending the day with the brilliant Bharat Bhise HNA cybersecurity expert and someone who we all have a huge deal of respect for, and we have been asking him some of the many questions which you have sent in in the comments on some of our articles about hacking. One of the most common questions which we were asked by you guys was why people hack? A fascinating question and one which we put straight to Bharat.
To give you a little bit of background Bharat has been working in cybersecurity for almost 15 years now and during that time he has seen just about everything that you could imagine in terms of computer systems and their vulnerabilities, and how people are able to expose them.
When it comes to hacking, he has also seen just about everything that there is to see, and he has spent time with those who have been hackers and those who have the skill to do it. At first, we asked Bharat about why people hack expecting him to talk to us about the intentions of criminals, but there is in fact a far better answer, and that was the one that he gave us.
Believe it or not, there are many people out there who hack for sport and they will seek to break into anything and everything if they feel that it is a challenge that they wish to take on. Within the hacking community, there is a real sense of competition as to who is the best and who has the most skilled when it comes to hacking.
It is for this reason that so many people will hack for no other reason than to get bragging rights over the rest of the community. This means that a new piece of software being released will be in the line of sight for a sports hacker. Whilst these men and women are still doing something illegal in breaching a network without permission, they are very much hacking for sport, and not for crime.
It would be remiss of us not to acknowledge that there are a wide number of individuals who do hack with criminal intentions and they are actively looking to make a profit of stealing people’s information for their own gain.
These people are not able to get away with this for very ling and despite the fact that they move in the digital shadows, police officials and departments have become very good at blending in with the hacking crowd and finding these criminals before too long.
Not all of those who hack with criminal intentions actually have their eyes on doing something criminal with the information that they obtain.
Of course, what these people are doing by breaching systems and databases and stealing personal or sensitive information is 100% illegal, but we are seeing more and more instance where those doing the hacking have actually been hired to do it by a criminal who doesn’t have the skill to do so themselves.
In most cases that have been found, the people doing the hacking actually have no idea what the ‘client’ is going to do with the information that they have obtained for them. This of course only makes them slightly less guilty, but it is interesting to see what motivations people have.
No, your eyes are not deceiving you, and as oxymoronic as it may sound, there really is a thing called ethical hacking. These hackers work, on a totally legal basis, with some of the world’s leading cybersecurity companies. The role of the ethical hacker is to hack the software before it is released, and the real hackers do.
The idea is that these are the best people to test the software for the company and so they are hired and paid very well to spend their days trying to breach the systems, using the best possible resources available. Instead of a company running the risk of getting their new and shiny software hacked becasue of weakness or a flaw, they make sure the issues are spotted first, fixed and then the product is rolled out.
Those who do work in ethical hacking have been to university and taken a course on this, and they perform a function that ensures the safety of so many businesses and individuals. It makes sense when you think about it, who better, for example, to show you how safe a bank is than a bank robber? Hiring someone with the same skills as a criminal but without the nefarious intentions is the perfect way for a security company to maintain the quality of their product.
German Serial Entrepreneur Matthias Mende also uses hacking in an ethical way. Mende recently launched another start-up online service called Digital Wallet Recovery where people who lost their passwords and access to their bitcoin wallet are able to get those recovered. Mende’s team of cryptographic and mathematical hacking geniuses already succeeded multiple times in opening Blockchain,Tresor, Ethereum, Electron and other digital Wallet recovering millions of dollars worth of funds.
There you have it, the number of ways that people hack and why.