Cyberattacks used to happen once an hour, but now they happen every hour, thanks to hackers and attackers with a lot of skill. When it comes to hacking, Linux is frequently the backbone of hacker-centric operating systems. This blog gives a lot of information about what ethical hacking is and how it works.
What does the term “ethical hacking” mean?
Ethical hackers use the same methods as malicious hackers, but they only do so with the administrator’s permission. By looking at how cybercriminals work, businesses can be better prepared to keep their data and security safe.
To “hack” a system means to look for and use security holes to get around security measures and get in without permission. Hackers use many different ways to get into computers, such as phishing, social engineering, and trying to guess passwords.
Hackers often break into a business’s computer system to steal private information and use it in a way that will hurt the business’s reputation.
Definitions of Ethical Hacking and Hacking
“Hacking” means getting into a system or network to steal data or other sensitive information. Hackers take advantage of insecure software due to programmers’ errors. Hackers who do not follow the rules of the hacking community are called “unethical hackers.” Hackers try to hide who they are because they know they are doing something wrong. Hacking is anything that is done with the goal of getting into a computer’s information system, or LAN.
Ethical hackers are people who use private information in a responsible way that the general public is not allowed to see. The goal of ethical hacking is to make sure that other hackers or viruses can’t get into a system. Computer experts who don’t break the law and do their work in an honest way are called “ethical hackers.” Even though hackers have more advanced skills, a skilled ethical hacker who can also identify the intruder can restore a system’s security.
Differences Between Hacking and Ethical Hacking
|Steal valuable information of company and individual for illegal activity||Hack system to reduce vulnerabilities of company’s system|
|Illegal practice and considered a crime||Legal practice, authorized by the company or individual|
|Such types of hackers are called black-hat hackers||Such types of hackers are called white-hat hackers|
|Such hackers try to access restricted networks through illegal practices and reduce the security of data.||Such hackers create firewalls and security protocols.|
|They work for themselves for dirty money.||They work with different government agencies and big tech companies.|
The Importance of Ethical Hacking
Let’s look at why the field of “ethical hacking” or “pen testing” is so important. For this, we need to know some of the many ways that ethical hacking can be used and the different kinds of it. Here are some examples:
- Making sure that applications have security features that protect both organizational and user databases
- Testing how strong a password is
- Checking if authentication protocols work
- Denial-of-service attacks: how to defend against them
- Network security and testing of anti-intrusion measures
- Testing out exploits to make sure that the security settings and privilege levels for the domain account and database administration are correct.
- After every software update or upgrade or after adding a new security patch, there should be a penetration test.
- Making sure that communication channels for data cannot be hacked
The Process of Ethical Hacking
Most hackers who are good at what they do follow this six-step process.
Once the organization gives clear and written permission, the reconnaissance part of the hacking process can begin. This means gathering as much information as possible about the “target” using all of the tools available to the hacker, such as the company website, internet research, and even social engineering.
2. Environmental Scanning
During this second scanning phase, the hacker moves from passive to active information gathering by looking for ways to infiltrate the network and bypass any intrusion detection systems in place.
3. Getting into the system
If step two goes well, the hacker moves on to step three, which is to attack the network. During this phase, the hacker gets into the target, figures out where the weak spots are, and figures out how much damage they could do now that they have access.
4. Keeping access to the system
Since it takes an average of 228 days to find a breach (Sobers, 2021), it is safe to assume that the average cybercriminal isn’t in and out. Once they have broken into a network, they stay as long as possible. In this fourth step, the hacker looks for ways to stay in control.
5. Getting Rid of the Proof of the Breach
Just like a person who breaks and enters might take the time to get rid of any signs of their crime, cybercriminals are likely to do the same thing online. In this step, the hacker looks for any signs of what they did and gets rid of them.
6. Submission of a Final Report
As their final deliverable, ethical hackers put together all the lessons they’ve learned from their mission and gave them to the organization, along with suggestions for how to avoid security problems in the future.
Types of Ethical Hacking
- Hacking into Web applications
Web hacking is the process of taking advantage of software over HTTP. This can be done by taking advantage of the software’s browser, messing with the URI, or working together with HTTP parts that are not stored in the URI.
- System Hacking
System hacking is a way for hacktivists to get into personal computers over a network. IT security experts can protect against these threats by breaking passwords, getting more permissions, making malicious software, and sniffing packets.
- Web Server Hacking
An application database server generates up-to-the-minute data for the web. Therefore, hackers use techniques like gluing, ping deluge, port scanning, sniffing attacks, and social engineering to gain access to a website and steal sensitive data.
- Hacking Wireless networks
Since radio waves are used to send information over wireless networks, it’s easy for a hacker to mess with the system from either close by or far away. Attackers often use network sniffing to find a wireless network’s identifier and break into it.
Ethical hacking is a key part of making cybersecurity better. It helps organizations find security holes, improve their security, and keep sensitive data from getting into the wrong hands. Ethical hacking improves the overall security of computer systems, networks, and the digital world as a whole when it is done in a legal and moral way.