Types of Hackers and the Difference between Ethical and Unethical Hacking

Whenever someone hears about hacking, the general perception is some cybercriminals illegally infiltrated a system, network, or account to conduct illicit activities. However, that is not always the case. Hacking is not always conducted with the intention of causing harm. Many times programmers need to perform hacking to improve IT security. Such hacking, which is performed for security purposes, is known as Ethical Hacking. While the hacking performed with the intention of causing troubles is known as Unethical or Black Hat Hacking or simply Hacking.

In this post, we would discuss in detail about Ethical and Unethical Hacking.

Types of Hackers

Before discussing Ethical and Unethical hacking, we would discuss the types of hackers who perform them. Hackers can be classified in many forms, such as White Hat, Grey Hat, Black Hat, Green Hat, Blue Hat, Red Hat, and so on. However, the hackers are generally divided into three main categories - White Hat Hackers, Grey Hat Hackers, and Black Hat Hackers.

White Hat Hackers

White Hat Hackers are professional hackers who are expertise in the cybersecurity field and perform hacking for government and official organizations. They are certified hackers who work with IT companies to solve their IT issues. The hacking performed by White Hat Hackers is ethical hacking.

Black Hat Hackers

Black Hat Hackers are skilled programmers who, like White Hat Hackers, are experts in cybersecurity but perform hacking with the wrong intentions. Such hackers infiltrate the system to get unauthorized access to the devices. Black Hat hackers work for personal gains and are mostly illegal.

Grey Hat Hackers

Grey Hat Hacker is the category of hackers who lies between the White Hat Hackers and Black Hat Hackers. While White Hat Hackers purely work for the good intention and under law, Black Hat Hackers works for wrong purposes, and Grey Hat Hackers works with both good and bad goals. Mostly Grey Hat Hackers perform hacking for fun and finding the security loopholes in organizations.

What is Ethical Hacking?

Ethical Hacking is performed by White Hat Hackers to find the security vulnerabilities of the system and prevent the Black Hat hackers from illegally infiltrating and stealing data from any system. The big organizations perform ethical hacking to test the cybersecurity level and identify the weak points. Ethical hacking is performed as per the rules and regulations set by the legal authorities. Generally, the device owners or the organizations on which the ethical hacking is performed knows about the hacking being performed on them. Today ethical hacking is a special course taught by many official institutes. By completing the Ethical Hacking course, an individual can become a certified professional White Hat hacker and also become eligible for working with prominent IT institutes.

What is Unethical Hacking?

Unethical Hacking or Black Hat hacking is performed by cybercriminals with the false intention of stealing sensitive data, money, and access the restricted networks and systems. Such type of hacking is practiced to disrupt official website networks and infiltrate communication between two or more parties. Generally, the targets on which black hat hacking is performed do not know about the infiltration as it is done quietly in the background.

Updated on: 12-Jul-2021

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