Hacking has always implied a negative connotation, and rightly so as hackers snoop around places they are not supposed to, accessing and retrieving sensitive data leading to losses (monetary and security) on a massive scale. They are a vile group who hack for personal gains. We always hear news about government secrets being traded or sensitive information of a company being stolen. How do we stop them? Lo and behold, here comes their competition, the knights who will protect us – Ethical Hackers.
Ethical hackers are a different breed of programmers. They are the silent, brooding heroes of the programming world. What do they do? They do precisely what a hacker does, but to protect and ensure the information does not go into the wrong hands. Ethical hackers put on different hats, from hacking systems for companies and governments to find loopholes to preventing black hat hackers from causing damage to an institution/organization. An ethical hacker essentially tries to get into a system using all the tools at their disposal to see how strong or safe the system security is. They check for and report areas which need improvement, places where a hacker can get through the security and wreak havoc if so willing. They essentially sweep for vulnerabilities and fix them so that anyone else cannot take advantage of the lapse.
We live in the age of the internet where everything is digitized. There is probably no workplace without a computer with internet or where a computer is not needed. In this era, information is valuable, i.e. it equals money. There are many entities that would pay handsome figures for information they can use to have someone by their hair. And to counter this threat, many governments and government organizations, financial institutions, trade and software companies, and anyone dealing with data that is sensitive to their operation have been known to employ ethical hackers to keep the data safe and away from the hands of wrongdoers who can manipulate it.
Ethical hackers use methods such as penetration testing and exploitation, DoS attacks, hacking frameworks, social engineering tactics, security scanners to break the system security walls step-by-step. These attacks are carried out without people in the organization knowing about it, except for the senior management and stakeholders. These hackers spend days or even weeks sometimes going through the entire IT security structure trying to gain backdoor access to the information repository.
There is a fine line between different hackers and ethical hackers lie on the good side of it. Data security is of foremost importance for any organization and it pays to know the vulnerabilities that can be plugged. The area and profession of ethical hacking is fascinating, giving it a kind of a rebellious charm and appeal. This is the field where the good guys play dirty for the greater good, kind of like a rugged outlaw who saves the town from bandits! So go on, don your ethical hacker hat and take on the goons who mean harm with our splendid Ethical Hacking course.