What Is Ethical Hacking?
In today’s world, we humans are extremely tech aware. With the widespread use of the internet and current technology, protecting all of our digital data, such as net banking information, account credentials, and medical records to name a few, has become a major concern.
Wannacry is a ransomware attack that has hit Asia.
Have you heard about the WannaCry ransomware attack? The Wannacry cryptoworm encrypted data and locked users out of their systems. The attack began in Asia in May 2017 and quickly spread around the world. Within a day, more than 2,300,00 PCs in 150 countries had been affected.
The Wannacry attack targeted users using unsupported versions of Microsoft Windows and those who hadn’t received the April 2017 security update. The Wannacry attack took a toll on every sector, including top tier corporations such as Hitachi, Nissan, and Fedex.
Because their systems were also disrupted, they had to put their companies on pause. This is referred to as a cyber attack, and cyber security is used to prevent such attacks. Cyber security can be defined as the activity of defending networks, computer systems, and their components from unauthorized digital attacks.
Hacking is the term used to describe criminal attacks that take advantage of flaws in a computer network to gain unauthorized access to data. A hacker is someone who attempts to gain access to computer systems. It’s a common misperception that hacking is always bad. There are hackers who operate for a variety of reasons.
Let’s take a closer look at three distinct hacker kinds.
Individuals that illegally hack into a network for monetary gain are known as black hat hackers.
White hat hackers exploit a system’s weaknesses by hacking into it with authorization in needed to shield the enterprise. Because this type of hacking is completely legal and ethical, they are often referred to as ethical hackers in addition to these hackers.
We also have grey hat hackers, who, as the name implies, are a mix of white and black. These hackers find vulnerabilities in systems and report them to the system’s owner, which is a good thing to do, but they do so without the owner’s permission. Grey hat hackers may also ask for money in exchange for the vulnerabilities they find.
Now that you’ve seen the many types of hackers, let’s learn more about legal and ethical hacking by following along with an entertaining story. Dan operates a trading company, and with the money his clients spend, he provides online training. Everything was going well, and Dan’s business was thriving, until a hacker decided to break into the company’s servers.
The hacker stole the credentials of various trading accounts and demanded a lump sum ransom in return for the stolen credentials. Dan misinterpreted the hacker’s words and refused to pay the hacker. As a result, the hacker withdrew money from various customers’ accounts, and Dan was liable to repay the customers. Dan lost a significant amount of money as well as the trust of his customers.
Dan spent a lot of time thinking about what could have gone wrong with his company’s security infrastructure after this incident, and he wished there was someone from his company who could have run a test attack to see how vulnerable systems were before the hacker got into the network. This is when he realized he needed an employee who thinks like a hacker and can spot vulnerabilities in his system before an outsider does.
He hired an ethical hacker to complete the job. John was a skilled professional who worked exactly like a hacker in no time he spotted several vulnerabilities in dan’s organization and closed all the loopholes hiring an ethical hacker helped dan protect his customers from future attacks, increasing the company’s productivity and protecting the company’s reputation.
Now you know that hacking isn’t necessarily a terrible thing. In this scenario, John reveals the existing network’s weaknesses, and this type of hacking is known as ethical hacking.
Six different phases of ethical hacking.
The process of ethical hacking is divided into six stages. Let’s take a look at each of these phases in detail to see how John, our ethical hacker, will act before initiating an attack.
The first thing John does is obtain all of the knowledge he needs about the organization’s system, which he plans to assault. Reconnaissance is the term for this procedure. He does this with tools like nmap and h-ping, and then utilizes tools like nmap and expose to try to find any vulnerabilities in the target system. This is where the scanning begins. He then attempts to exploit the flaws that he has discovered. This is referred to as obtaining access.
After gaining access to the organization’s networks, John attempts to keep his access by establishing back doors in the target system. The metasploit program assists him with this phase, which is known as sustaining access.
Because John is a brilliant hacker, he makes every effort to leave no trace of his attack. We now have the final phase, which is reported. In this phase, Jon documents a summary of his entire attack, including the vulnerabilities he discovered, the tools he used, and the success rate of the attack. After reviewing the report, Dan is able to make a call and determine how to protect his organization from any external cyber attacks.
Aren’t you all convinced that John is a valuable asset to any organization? If you want to be an ethical hacker like John, you’ll need a few abilities. First and foremost, you’ll need to have a thorough understanding of operating environments. Windows, Linux, Unix, and Macintosh are examples of operating systems.
To successfully land a position as an ethical hacker like john, you must have a global certification on ethical hacking. A few examples of ethical hacking certification are certified ethical hacker certification ceh comptia pentest plus, and licensed penetration tester certification, to name a few.
Now I have a question for you in which phase of ethical hacking will you install back doors in the target system.
b) maintaining access.
c) clearing tracks.
Give it a thought and leave your answers in the comments section below.
The amount of cyber crimes is precisely proportionate to the unending advancement of technology in this sector. Cybercrime is expected to cost $6 trillion by 2021, thus firms are always on the hunt for cyber security personnel to combat these crimes.
A certified ethical hacker’s average annual pay in the United States is $91,000, while in India, it’s around rupees seven lakhs. So, what are you waiting for? Get certified and become an ethical hacker like John, and put an end to cyber attacks around the world.