Hacking – A Serious Threat to Modern Technology

Hacking practiced by organizations for damage stability of their competitors  

Ethical hacking is a new dimension of hacking in the field of cyber-security  

Hacking is penetrating into a digital device without permission. Penetration into the system can be from outside the system and inside the system. Usually, hackers are great programmers who possess proficient knowledge in computer programing and understand different operating systems. The target of a hacker is the data of an organization; it can be an organization’s customer information, trade secret, etc. that is exploited through hacking increasing vulnerabilities for the organization’s IT system.  

It is commonly used by organizations against their competitors to either damage their reputation, gain monetary benefit or gain competitive edge. Hacking is only possible if there is a security vulnerability in the device, from which the hacker can exploit it for gaining benefits. Malicious hacking is now a huge black industry making tons of money illegally by exploiting the illegal demands of an organization against its competitors. There are different hacking tools and techniques that are used by hackers to do their job. Some of the common techniques are the following: 

Viruses 

One of the common techniques used by hackers is developing viruses and use them to gain access to the targeted devices. It is also referred to as a digital bomb that can destroy a digital device. It can be a time bomb that can be activated at a certain time depending on the nature of the virus. The purpose of computer viruses is to copy, append or delete the targeted data files.  

Exploitation 

A computer code that causes an unintended behavior of the system or device. It can target the operating system or a specific application while spreading itself in the digital device. It is induced through the vulnerability in the network system. It is used to provide more privileged rights to the hacker than an administrator.  

Worms  

Worms are a form of virus that sends the copied data files over the network without the access rights and permission.  They are commonly used to refer to a silent computer code that can reside in the digital device and act silently and timely to send the data files to the defined destination. 

There are different type of viruses that either produces multiple copies or some are transferred through external hardware devices like CDs and other storage devices or from the network.  

Protective Measures 

Below are some common yet useful measures that one should take for preventing a malicious attack: 

  • Use only licensed software even antivirus software from the official website for downloading 
  • Don’t open the SPAM and unknown emails instead of deleting them
  • Don’t download unknown and  un-scanned attachments from the emails or from any website
  • Don’t click on ads when searching or surfing on the website nor allow the cookies on any websites  
  • Update the operating system from the official website only  
  • Use only highly secured hardware and wireless network device or routers and set password on them
  • Don’t use the publicly available free and unsecured Wi-Fi
  • Always have backup of important files on other devices or on cloud  
  • Don’t use a similar password pattern or any important websites, files and social media accounts  
  • Always have a combination of digits, alphabets and special characters in the password  
  • Secure the important files with security codes   

Although hacking is illegal it can be used in an ethical and legal fashion, commonly known as ethical hacking. This illegal profession can be used for the benefits of protecting the organization from any potential cyber-attack by detecting any possible breaches. Different organizations hire hackers to test their system for identifying the loopholes in the IT system and then improve the identified security issues. Ethical hacking is the most effective way of protecting the system. It helps the IT department identify the vulnerabilities from a hacker, and how the security of the system can be improved.  

Malicious hacking can cause some serious damage to the organizations, government, and even individuals. The potential damage has damaged the reputation and cause monetary loss to the victim on the contrary ethical hacking is used to prevent the data breaches.  

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