Ethical Hacking - Type of Hackers and Miscellaneous Hackers

Hackers can be divided into three groups on the basis of why they are hacking system.

Type of Hackers

  • White Hat Hacker – A white hat hacker breaks security for non-malicious reasons. Perhaps to test own security system or while working for a security company which makes security software. This classification also includes individuals who perform penetration tests and vulnerability assessments within a contractual agreement. The EC- Council also known as the International Council of Commerce Consultants is one of those organizations that have developed certifications, courseware, classes and online training covering the diverse arena of ethical hacking.
  • Black Hat Hacker – A black hat hacker “violates computer security for little reason beyond maliciousness or for personal gain”. Black hat hackers break into secure networks to destroy, modify or steal data or to make the network unusable for those who are authorized to use the network. Black hat hackers are also referred to as the “crackers” within the security industry and modern programmers.
  • Grey Hat Hacker – A grey hat hacker lies between a black hat and a white hat hacker. A grey hat hacker may surf the Internet and hack into a computer system for the sole purpose of notifying the administrator that their system has a security defect.

Miscellaneous Hackers

Apart from the above well-known classes of hackers, we have the following categories of hackers based on what they hack and how they do it −

  • Script Kiddie – Script Kiddies normally don’t care about hacking (if they did, they’d be Green Hats. See below.). They copy code and use it for a virus or an SQLi or something else. Script Kiddies will never hack for themselves; they’ll just download overused software (LOIC or Metasploit, for example) and watch a YouTube video on how to use it. A common Script Kiddie attack is DoSing or DDoSing (Denial of Service and Distributed Denial of Service), in which they flood an IP with so much information it collapses under the strain. This attack is frequently used by the “hacker” group Anonymous, which doesn’t help anyone’s reputation.
  • Elite Hackers – This is a social status among hackers, which is used to describe the most skilled. Newly discovered exploits will circulate among these hackers.
  • Gray Hat – Nothing is ever just black or white; the same is true in the world of hacking. Gray Hat hackers don’t steal money or information (although, sometimes they deface a website or two), yet they don’t help people for good (but, they could if they wanted to). These hackers comprise most of the hacking world, even though Black Hat hackers garner most (if not all) of the media’s attention.
  • Green Hat Hacker – These are the hacker “n00bz,” but unlike Script Kiddies, they care about hacking and strive to become full-blown hackers. They’re often flamed by the hacker community for asking many basic questions. When their questions are answered, they’ll listen with the intent and curiosity of a child listening to family stories.
  • Red Hat Hacker – These are the vigilantes of the hacker world. They’re like White Hats in that they halt Black Hats, but these folks are downright SCARY to those who have ever tried so much as PenTest. Instead of reporting the malicious hacker, they shut him/her down by uploading viruses, DoSing and accessing his/her computer to destroy it from the inside out. They leverage multiple aggressive methods that might force a cracker to need a new computer.
  • Blue Hat Hacker – If a Script Kiddie took revenge, he/she might become a Blue Hat. Blue Hat hackers will seek vengeance on those who’ve them angry. Most Blue Hats are n00bz, but like the Script Kiddies, they have no desire to learn.