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Ethical Hacking

What is Ethical Hacking?

Ethical hacking is the process of researching and discovering vulnerabilities in computer systems and networks without harming the system or its users. Ethical hackers are those individuals who test security systems and networks for weaknesses. They may use any number of methods to do so, including social engineering, phishing, exploiting vulnerabilities, scanning ports, etc.

A white hat hacker performs security tests for the good of all, to help organizations improve security. Black hat hackers are those who perform these tests maliciously, to cause harm to others.

What do Ethical Hackers do?

Ethical hackers focus on finding vulnerabilities in software systems that could lead to data breaches. Hackers are generally interested in learning about systems and trying to discover ways to penetrate them so that they can steal information or change system settings. Ethical hackers are concerned with finding solutions that will protect systems and individuals rather than looking for ways to compromise or attack systems. Ethical hackers seek to understand the risks of technology and work to mitigate them. At Cyber Sleuth Security, our ethical hackers have years of experience finding and fixing vulnerabilities in technology. We also specialize in helping companies, organizations and individuals protect themselves from cyber-attacks. Our White Hat Team helps clients prevent future attacks by uncovering vulnerabilities and providing fixes for them. This includes finding ways to improve security measures so that they work better and more effectively. At Cyber Sleuth Security, we believe technology should be used for good, not evil. That is why we help clients understand and protect themselves from cyber threats.

What are the Roles and Responsibilities of an Ethical Hacker?

Ethical hackers are responsible for finding and reporting potential security flaws within a computer system. They do this by testing the system and identifying weaknesses. This includes looking for bugs, viruses, and malware. An ethical hacker does not hack into a system without permission from the system owner.

The primary goal of an ethical hacker is to find and report potential security flaws in an organization's system. However, it is important to note that there are many different types of ethical hackers. Some ethical hackers focus solely on discovering vulnerabilities, while others look for ways to exploit those vulnerabilities.

Hackers who perform ethical hacking must adhere to certain rules including obtaining permission from the system owner before performing the hack.

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Origins of Ethical Hacking

Former IBM exec John Patrick coined the term "ethical hacking" back in the 1990s, but the concept and its application have been going on for much longer than that.

The word 'hacking' first appeared in the 1960s when it was used to describe people who had exceptional skills in computing. It was then used as a compliment for those with excellent coding abilities.

As computers grew increasingly powerful, malicious hackers began using them to hack into telephone networks and make free long-distance phone calls. These activities were called "phreaking" because they involved breaking into telephone exchanges (the switches that connect telephones).

Commercializing hacking skills has increased the complexity of cybersecurity. On the positive side, however, cybersecurity companies and IT vendors now provide optional ethical hacking services through contracts to corporations. An underground black-hat hacker marketplace exists on the dark web, where aspiring cybercriminals sell their hacking skills.

Benefits of Ethical Hacking

Ethical hacking is becoming increasingly important in today’s world. Hackers can access sensitive information such as credit card numbers, social security numbers, passwords, etc., and use it for financial gain. This is why ethical hackers play a vital role in keeping companies safe. Some of the benefits of ethical hacking include:

  • Discovering Vulnerabilities

Ethical Hackers can discover vulnerabilities from an attacker’s perspective. They look at how attackers behave and what tools they use. By doing this, they can find out where there are holes in a system and how easy it would be for an attacker to exploit those holes.

  • Implementing A Secure Network

A secure network is one that doesn’t allow unauthorized people to enter it. To do this, you must make sure that every device on the network is protected against attacks. 

  • Gain the Trust of your Customers and Investors

When people give out their sensitive information they want to know that it is going to be protected. By ensuring you have a secure network and that any possible vulnerability has been addressed, you will be able to reassure your customers and investors that their information is safe. 

White Hat Hacker vs Black Hat Hacker

White hats are ethical hackers who identify vulnerabilities and alert IT organizations and software developers to these flaws so they can be fixed before an attacker exploits them. White hats hack for the good of the security community. White hats hack to improve security, rather than to damage or steal data. There are many different types of white hat hackers, including penetration testers, ethical hackers, security researchers, bug bounty hunters, vulnerability assessors, and software auditors.

Black hats are malicious hackers who hack for the purpose of stealing or damaging information. They often use stolen credentials to gain access to systems. These hackers typically have the skills to break into networks and data to steal passwords, credit card numbers, and other personal information. In addition, these hackers sometimes create fake websites to trick victims into giving out personal information. They may also send phishing emails that appear to come from trusted companies or individuals.

Grey-Hat Hackers

Aside from the authorized and unauthorized hacks, there is another type that is a blend of the two. This type of hacker is commonly referred to as a grey hat hacker. A grey hat hacker is someone who exploits security vulnerabilities to spread public knowledge about those vulnerabilities. While these hackers do not always adhere to a code of ethical hacking, they still use the same techniques that authorized hackers employ.

While some grey hat hackers are motivated by profit, others are just looking to make sure that everyone else knows what they know. Some grey hat hackers even go as far as to report the vulnerability to the manufacturer or developer privately, so they won't be blamed for spreading it around. But most grey hat hackers choose to expose the vulnerability publicly because they want people to know about it. They might even sell information about the vulnerability to interested parties.

The difference between grey hat hackers and white hat hackers is that grey hat hackers don't necessarily follow a set of rules or guidelines when they hack. White hat hackers usually abide by certain standards when they're trying to break into systems. For example, they'll try to avoid damaging anything during their attack. Grey hat hackers often ignore such things. Instead, they focus on finding bugs and weaknesses that could potentially allow them to steal data or cause damage.

Core Concepts of Ethical Hacking

An ethical hacker is someone who detects weaknesses in applications, systems, or organizations' infrastructures that attackers can use to attack individuals or organizations. They use this method to prevent cyber attacks and cybersecurity breaches by legally hacking into the system and finding weaknesses. An ethical hacker uses the methods and thought processes used by a malicious hacker to get into an unauthorized system and test its security measures.

Hackers follow a five-step process when they attempt to break into networks or systems. Ethical Hacks begin by identifying potential security holes in the target systems, then exploit them, maintain constant access to the target systems, and finally, clear their tracks after they've completed their mission.

Ethical Hacking vs. Penetration Testing

Penetration testing and ethical hacking are often used synonymously, but there is some distinction that separates the two. 

Many organizations will use both types of professionals to bolster IT security. Ethical hackers typically look for vulnerabilities within an organization’s information technology infrastructure while pen testers seek to identify weaknesses in the way that the organization uses those technologies. Both groups regularly conduct pen tests to assess how well an organization protects itself against cyberattacks.

However, ethical hackers are usually hired to perform one-time assessments of an organization’s security. They may be contracted to find potential holes in an organization’s firewall, or they might be tasked with identifying weaknesses in an application such as a web server. These tasks are completed during a single project, and ethical hackers do not generally return to the client unless asked to do so.

Pen testers, on the other hand, are hired to provide regular monitoring and maintenance of an organization’s IT system. This includes assessing whether the organization’s existing defenses are adequate, and it may include conducting routine audits of the organization’s applications. Pen testers may also be called upon to evaluate the effectiveness of the organization’s current security practices.

FAQs

How do ethical hackers differ from malicious hackers?

Ethical hackers work with companies and the government to identify potential vulnerabilities in systems. They use tools like penetration tests, social engineering, scanning, and web application firewalls to find weaknesses. These types of hacks are often referred to as white hat hacking because the hacker doesn't intend to cause harm. Instead, he or she wants to make sure the organization's network is secure.

There are several significant differences between ethical hacking and malicious hacking. For example, ethical hackers don't attempt to break into networks illegally. They want to know how well the system works, not whether it can be breached. In addition, ethical hackers aren't trying to steal data; they're looking for holes in the system. Finally, ethical hackers don't try to trick people into giving up information. They simply ask questions about the system to determine what's working and what isn't.

What skills and certifications are required for ethical hackers?

Ethical hacking is a technology job with specific skills, and cyber security certifications help people break into the field. Many ethical hacking jobs still demand a Bachelor’s Degree in Information Technology, or another technology or cybersecurity-related degree. Although many companies prefer hiring someone with a degree, there are now more opportunities for those without one.

The most proficient ethical hackers have both a degree and some form of certification. They typically come from a background in computer science, networking, software development, systems administration, or similar fields. A good hacker must know how to use tools like Metasploit, Burp Suite, and Nmap, and understand how to exploit vulnerabilities.

Computer programmers should have a working knowledge of Linux servers, Cisco network control devices, virtualization, Citrixattackand Microsoft Exchange. Those looking for more advanced positions should have experience in web application penetration testing, mobile app reverse engineering, and social media manipulation.

How can ethical hackers help businesses?

Business owners can easily see how they can benefit from hiring ethical hackers. A white hat hacker uses all the same techniques that a real attacker would use when carrying out an actual cyber ​​attac​k. An ethical hacker will often uncover weaknesses in a company's security systems before they're exploited by malicious hackers.

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