Looking way back three decades, the word hacking actually means ‘Becoming a well-known expert in any trade for the sake of education’. This could mean that any expert can actually be called a hacker. However, in the present age, hacking is usually equated with only one thing: Computer Access.
Nowadays, hacking is usually related whenever a computer crime is being committed by someone, therefore resulting to some computers going haywire. However, what most of us don’t know is that there are different classifications of hackers according to their deeds and beliefs, the White and Black Hat Hackers being the famous ones.
Black Hat vs. White Hat Hackers: What’s the Difference?
Listed below are the latest hacker classifications according to computer experts:
- White Hat Hacker – White Hat Hackers are those who are using the power of hacking in order to do good deeds, hence the reason behind the color white. Nowadays, white hat hackers are either being employed as paid professionals or being hired as mercenaries whenever the computer systems of a certain company or government branch malfunctions.
- Black Hat Hacker – Being known as the classic one and also the main subject of Dick Francis’ Intruder, a Black Hat Hacker uses his or her computer skills in order to have unauthorized access to a target computer system. Once done, he or she either controls the computer as a zombie or bot for DDoS (Domain’s Denial of Service) purposes or just copy the essential files that could be of use to her or him. Just like before, Black Hat Hackers are only known for their handles or codenames, though a careful search could be done in order to reveal their identities.
- Grey Hat Hacker – Just like the mixture of black and white colors, a grey hat hacker is the term used to those who have no definite side. In other words, they could commit crimes just like the black hats or help others just like the white hats at the same time. Usually, grey hat hackers are just computer hobbyists with intermediate to advanced hacking skills that disassemble or modify their computers or system to improve performance.
In addition to the three, there are two minor classifications of hackers that are also worth pointing out:
- Script Kiddies – Being a stylish classification for novice hackers, script kiddies could probably fit into one of the three major hacker classifications, depending on their points of interest.
- Hacktivists – A short term for Hacker Activists, hacktivists are usually known to get themselves involved in illegal activities for the sake of what they call Equality. Hacking organizations such as Anonymous and Lulzsec are said to be hacktivists since they are fighting government corruptions in different countries.