In many movies, the hacker is portrayed as the villain of the story who only wants to steal the data and sell it on the black market. However, not all hackers are necessarily bad guys – some even protect you from potential data breaches.
What is hacking?
Hacking is the practice of using technological knowledge to break into a computer system, but not necessarily steal data or impact the system’s work.
White – Grey – Black:
Hacking is not always an illegal practice, there are individuals who “hack” information systems to identify vulnerabilities and prevent data breaches. These hackers, also called “white hat hackers” only aim to identify security vulnerabilities without using them against you. These white hat hackers are generally considered ethical hackers since they obey certain ethics for the good of digital safety.
Of course, there are not only “good” ones. Some hackers, hack with the only goal to show their skills, while they do not pay much interest to the data they could recover. These are what are called the grey hat hackers. They are neither nice nor bad, and only hack for the challenge.
But be aware of the bad ones: the black hat hackers – they seek a reward. They will hack information systems in the quest for added value, often monetary (e.g. by inserting malicious programs to steal data and asking for monetary compensation in order to revert the system to its previous state).
Cybersecurity – an essential topic for all
Finally, many more or less ethical actors exist on the cybersecurity scene. There is your ally, white hat hackers, who only seek to guarantee the security of your computer system. The “bullies”, the grey hat hackers who seek to challenge themselves and show their competence, and finally the “bad guys” of the story – the black hat hackers, whose only aim is to hijack your information systems.
Today, cybersecurity issues have become paramount. We can all be affected by a cyberattack and potentially lose our data. Here are some tips to ensure your security on the World wide web:
- Regularly update your apps
- Never open a suspicious link
- Avoid connecting to a public network
- Never share your passwords
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