Cyber security has emerged as one of the main challenges to commercial enterprises and governmental institutions in today's technological age and internet-driven society. Due to the unacceptably high rate of cyberattack occurrences, it is now undeniable for businesses that standard network security methods are no longer effectively preventing such harmful attacks.
Ethical hacking entered the scene to expose the hazards and weaknesses in computer systems that could serve as a backdoor for a cyberattack.
We'll talk about ethical hacking and how many types of hackers there are in this blog's section relating to business and industry cyber security.
Who is Ethical Hacker?
An Ethical Hacker is the first to get access to the target system. Thus, the organization's security staff may patch a weakness in the system to prevent an intruder from abusing it. There is even an ethical hacking tools pdf available for reference.
Hacking professionals adhere to four basic protocols:
- Stay within the bounds of the law. For example, perform a security evaluation only if you have the correct permissions.
- Determine the scope of the project. For example, if you're going to use an ethical hacker, you need to know the size of the investigation.
- Report flaws in the system. Send a notification to the organization detailing any vulnerabilities that were detected during the evaluation. Provide a full report on how to cope with these problems.
- Keep in mind that the information you're dealing with is very sensitive. In certain cases, ethical hackers may be required to sign a non-disclosure agreement in addition to any extra terms and conditions imposed by the firm they are inspecting, depending on the sensitivity of the data they inspect. The CEH training certificate is a vendor-neutral certification in the network security field of Ethical Hacking.
Types of Ethical Hackers
1. White Hat Hacking: The "Good Guys."
White hat hackers, also called ethical hackers, are frequently employed as security experts by businesses or governments. They only hack systems with authorization and good intentions to report vulnerabilities so they may be corrected. Their work is lawful because they are paid for their services and have the organization's approval.
Where Is White Hat Hacking Used?
White hat hackers have extensive computer and networking knowledge, and almost all businesses can benefit from the abilities and understanding of security specialists. To do various penetration testing, bug bounty programs, and other services, ethical hackers are welcome to be employed by IT organizations, particularly those that deal with cybersecurity.
IT professionals seeking a safer profession with lots of room for advancement should research White Hat hacker jobs by obtaining IT Security Certification to bring a wide range of abilities to the table.
What Do They Do?
White hat hackers are typically employed by particular companies. The specialists then start looking for security flaws and making security improvements.
They employ their abilities to prevent intrusions. Also, they frequently work in the background to block assaults in real time to protect services and assets from attack. Additionally, they may concentrate on cyber threat analysis, disclosing flaws to direct and organize the prioritization of vulnerability correction.
White hat hacking requires a lot of communication and problem-solving abilities. Along with knowledge and common sense, a white hat hacker must have excellent judgment, great technical and organizational abilities, and the capacity to keep it together under pressure.
They must also have the same mindset as a black hat hacker, with all their sinister objectives and cunning tactics.
There are no set educational qualifications for these hackers. Instead, each organization sets its standards. A bachelor's degree is typically required in cybersecurity, a related field. In the field of cybersecurity, credentials and experience are also crucial. To become an ethical hacker, you can also take a certified Ethical Hacking course.
Motives And Aims Of White Hat Hacker
These hackers' objectives include assisting corporations and a desire to find security holes in networks. They seek to safeguard businesses and support them in the continuous conflict with online threats. A White Hat hacker is somebody who will assist in defending the business against increasing cybercrime. They help companies build defenses, recognize their vulnerabilities, and fix them before other hackers do.
2. Black Hat Hackers: The "Bad Guys."
Black hat hackers are renowned for purposefully breaking into computer networks. They might also disseminate malware that steals passwords, credit card numbers, and other private data, damages files, or seizes control of systems. Black hats are driven by selfish motives like monetary gain, retaliation, or the desire to cause chaos.
Who Uses Black Hat Hackers?
Since they create malicious code and attempt to obtain unauthorized access to a system, black hat hackers are the bad guys. Their motivations include pursuing personal or financial gain or engaging in cyber espionage. They can introduce malware into a system and steal private information, or they can encrypt the entire network of a business and demand ransom money to unlock it.
Black Hat Hackers: Villains Or Vigilantes?
Black hat hackers are frequently accused of having evil intentions. However, this isn't always the case. Whether or not a hacker intends to profit personally, simply hacking into a system without permission qualifies them as a black hat.
A black hat hacker could gain access to a system just because it appears weak or is difficult to defend against. Some black hat hackers may have carried over the countercultural mindset from the early days of hacking, perceiving legislation prohibiting network intrusion as an attack on the right to free speech.
Motives And Aims of black hat hackers
To break into a company's network and take money, sensitive information, or bank information. Typically, they sell the resources they have stolen on the underground market, utilize them for personal gain, or threaten the target company.
3. Gray Hat Hackers
The term "gray hat hacker" refers to someone who may transgress moral or ethical guidelines without having harmful intent, like black hat hackers.
What Makes Gray Hat Hacking Unique?
White hat and black hat hackers combine to form gray hat hackers. Typically, they wander about trying to break into systems but never do anything bad. They will inform the company of their findings and may occasionally demand a small fee to resolve the problem. Although they have noble intentions, they use poor tactics. Although they don't actually take advantage of any flaws, they are breaking the law because they lack prior authorization.
Gray Hat Hacking In Industry
Some industries, especially those in the technology industry, welcome and even promote the investigations of gray hat hackers. Of course, a hacker returns to the realm of white hat hacking once authorization is granted. Since ethics are not always linked to legality, many gray hat hackers nevertheless refer to themselves as ethical hackers.
Motive And Aims Of Gray Hat Hackers
A gray hat's true motivation is frequently to flaunt their abilities and garner recognition for what they see as a contribution to cybersecurity.
4. Other Ethical Hacker Types
Depending on how they plan to compromise a system, different types of hackers can be categorized into different groups, such as white hat, black hat, gray hat, and more. To understand the hacker types, let's look at the hackers and their motives.
Red hat hackers: Motives And Aims
Red hat hackers are referred to as the cybersecurity industry's vigilantes. A black hat hacker's operations could be completely disrupted and locked out of their own system by malware sent to them by red hat hackers. They are characterized as "vigilantes" because they deal with the bad guys independently rather than calling the police authorities.
Red hat hackers contend that they are ethical and fight against hacks they disapprove of. Red hat hackers sometimes attack businesses, governments, and other establishments they believe are hiding something to reveal that information.
Green Hat Hackers: Motive And Aims
The ones still learning are the "green hat" hackers. They may have different goals and choose a good or bad course, but for the time being, all of their attention is on honing their skills.
The goal of green hat hackers is to develop their talents and pick up tricks from more experienced hackers so they may become fully-fledged hackers.
Blue Hats: Motive And Aims
Blue hat hackers don't hack to learn; they hack to become more well-known. They try to make amends with rivals by using hacking as a weapon. Although they may not be the best, their motivations can be harmful because they will stop at nothing to achieve their goal.
Elite hackers: Motive And Aims
The "innovators" or people who took part in the early years of hacking are typically viewed as elites. They are considered experts and innovators in the hacking field and are frequently the first to find novel attack techniques. They want to carry out sophisticated cyberattacks against people and businesses. Companies with high revenue levels are more at risk of elite hackers.
Script kiddie: Motives And Aims
It is common knowledge that ignorance is never safe. The Script Kiddies are amateur hackers who specialize in various aspects of hacking. Using programs created by other hackers, they attempt to compromise the system. They aim to breach networks, websites, or computer systems. Simply garnering recognition from their peers is the motivation behind the hacking. Script Kids are young people who don't fully understand the hacking process.
Neophyte: Motives And Aims
A newcomer to the hacking scene who is already aware of some of the ethical issues involved is known as a beginner or neophyte. Beginners attempt to learn via tutorials. Only when they are truly confused and in need of some additional details and clarification, do they frequently ask questions.
Hacktivist: Motives And Aims
Of all types of hackers, these kinds seek to compromise official websites. They pose as activists, hence the term "hacktivist." A hacktivist is a person or a group of anonymous hackers who aim to access government networks and websites. Data obtained from accessed government records is exploited for social or political gain on an individual basis.
Businesses that retain highly valuable personal data are becoming the target of hackers. As the field of hacking develops, it will be intriguing to see what new technologies appear. There will likely be an increase in hacking methods presently in use, as well as the development of new ones. New challenges and ethical dilemmas will arise with all technology. Therefore, sign up if you want to learn how to become an ethical hacker through KnowledgeHut’s IT security certification.
Roles and Responsibilities of Ethical Hacker
Some people believe that an ethical hacker is entirely liable for the testing process of systems and apps. This seems to be a widespread misperception among the general public. This is not the case because an ethical hacker is liable for much more than just stealing information. These do not apply to all ethical hacker types. A few of their activities include -
- Using social engineering techniques to gain an advantage
- Analyzing patch updates by doing a thorough vulnerability analysis on each one
- To defeat honeypots, IPS (Intrusion Prevention Systems), IDS (Intrusion Detection Systems), and firewalls, an ethical hacker will test their abilities.
- Ethical hackers might use other tactics they studied in the best Cybsecurity certifications like detecting connections, phishing websites, bypassing, hijacking server software, and breaking wireless encryption and online applications.
To duplicate the actions of a black-hat hacker, an ethical hacker must first analyze the organization's defense mechanisms and social engineering components. Then, his responsibility is to ensure that the company responds adequately to these scenarios if they are not already doing so effectively.
Benefits of Ethical Hacker
1. They know how hackers think
Even for IT experts, getting inside a hacker's head might be difficult. However, hackers can leverage your blind spots if you don't grasp how hackers operate and what they seek. White hat hackers are ethical in their conduct, but they know what makes black hat hackers tick. They understand how hackers work and can employ that information to defend your network.
2. They know where to start
It's remarkable how many PCs and mobile devices are linked to one company network. It's difficult to know where to begin when reviewing cyber security, but ethical hackers understand where and how to search for possible flaws.
3. They know the weak spots
You may assume your network is safe, but it may contain hidden flaws. You may not perceive the flaws, but an ethical hacker will. The main reason to employ an ethical hacker is to find vulnerabilities in your cyber security. These skilled hackers are masters at locating back doors, access points, and other potential network access points.
4. No one can test better than them
Monitoring and rigorous testing of any network are critical to adequate cyber protection, but the testers must be skilled. A false feeling of security and a fatal data leak might result from network testers not knowing what to look for. Ethical hackers are the best at network testing and penetration testing. Years of expertise probing networks for flaws means they know how to test correctly so that you can trust the findings.
Skills Required to Become an Ethical Hacker
- Networking Knowledge
- Skills in Linux
- Skills in Programming
- Reverse Engineering Basics
- Cryptography knowledge
- DB Knowledge
- Resolving Issues
How to become an Ethical Hacker?
Offensive Security Certified Professional (OSCP) and Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) training are the two certificates required for Ethical hackers. The EC-Council defines a Certified Ethical Hacker as a trained professional who recognizes and understands how to hunt for vulnerabilities in target systems legally and acceptably (s). Other EC-Council cybersecurity professional certificates can help you stand out as an ethical hacker. The best cybersecurity certification can be found here.
An ethical hacker is indeed an exaggeration for many. Both opposed ideas—high ethical standards vs. "hacking," which is generally connected with criminal conduct. An aggressive security expert could be a good phrase; however, an ethical hacker is typically used since it sounds more intriguing. Keep in mind that there are various ethical hacker types.
Whether or not the job description includes the term hacker, these positions are not for the ethically dubious or anybody with a history of bad behavior. Ethical hackers must have access to sensitive data that, if leaked, might be disastrous for the company. In addition, government personnel and contractors often need a security clearance. A background check and social and financial media data analysis are required for a security clearance. Also, having a good learning experience with KnowledgeHut’s CEH training will always be useful.