Hackers: what types are there and how they act on the Internet

On the Internet we can find many terms that refer to computer attacks, but also to users who are going to try to avoid them. In this article we are going to talk about what types of hackers there are , how they act and which of them are going to act in a positive way and which ones are going to cause damage. We will see that there are notable differences between them.

Hacker, a term that encompasses many

Hackers: what types are there

We can say that the term hacker is not always used correctly. Generally the media often use it to describe a person who carries out attacks on the network. But this is not so. We are really dealing with a person with computer, security and network knowledge, who can use them both for good and for evil.

That is why there are different types . The word hacker is going to encompass many people. Some are dedicated to making the cyber world safer, with fewer criminals, and accessible to all. Others, on the other hand, are the ones that are going to carry out computer attacks with the aim of stealing passwords, information and compromising security.

A hacker can discover vulnerabilities in a system, device, or any application. Sometimes he acts on his own, simply as a hobby, while sometimes he can even be hired by a company to detect failures. Sometimes there are also groups of computer experts who can collaborate with different causes, whether they are positive or negative for the rest.

You will always be a person who has great skills in all things computer related. You will know how to navigate the Internet well, you will have knowledge of programming, computer security and you will be able to use multiple tools with which to carry out tests of all kinds. For example, you can test the security of a Wi-Fi network or a certain system.

what types exist

There are multiple types of hackers. We are going to show first of all those that do not act maliciously to harm the rest, at least on paper, although you will find that there are differences between them. Later we will see which ones do act maliciously.

white hat

First, there is what is known as a white hat hacker. In this case they will use their knowledge for good . They will try to detect security problems in a system or program and alert so that an attacker cannot exploit them and steal data, passwords or cause something to go wrong.

Many companies will pay white hat hackers to find bugs in their equipment. For example, an organization that is responsible for creating computer programs wants to detect security flaws as soon as possible and thus prevent an attacker from using them maliciously.

Facebook contrata hackers

Gray hat

Second on the list would be a gray hat hacker. They act somewhat like the previous ones, but they also have different tints and that they could approach a real attacker. What they do is sneak into networks without permission, in computer systems they are responsible for knowing, etc. Sometimes they just run tests and don’t go any further than that.

On other occasions, what they seek is to later obtain something in return. In other words, they are going to alert a company that they have a certain vulnerability and thus obtain some benefit. However, as we have indicated, these tests will be carried out without permission, breaking the laws .


A different term is hacktivist. In this case, you will use your knowledge to carry out campaigns or actions to raise awareness. They can become political, environmental, ideological… Basically he is an activist , but in the digital world. They will use computer systems and the Internet for this.

A hacktivist can get around security systems to be able to send a message, for example. Sometimes they can even act in countries where there is no freedom of expression, in dictatorships, helping their citizens to be able to use the Internet to raise awareness and overthrow a tyrannical government.

Blue hat

We also find the term blue hat hacker. It is less well known than the previous ones. In part it acts like the white hats, but in this case it is aimed at companies and organizations . It will be a person or group of people who work to detect security flaws within a company or in any of its systems.

This will allow bugs and vulnerabilities to be found and corrected before anything reaches users. For example, an application that they are developing and that has a problem that may expose user data.

Red Hat

The intentions of a red hat hacker are basically good, but not so good in form. In other words, their mission is to go after cybercriminals, but no matter what they do. They can attack a system or any application used by the attacker as long as it cannot carry out its task.

Their goal is to destroy the infrastructure that they are going to use to carry out attacks against users on the network. With this they could protect both private users as well as companies and organizations that could be compromised by a type of malware in question or a malicious strategy.

amateur or green hat

In this case we are dealing with a cybersecurity fan , but still with little knowledge. You are going to perform experiments, you are going to test some systems or start using certain tools. In this way, he will learn to become a true hacker in the future.

The intentions, at least initially, are not bad. Therefore, it enters the list of terms related to hackers when it is going to try to do good, in one way or another. It is, therefore, someone who is starting in this world.

With bad intentions

But there are not only hackers with good intentions. Unfortunately, the Internet is full of security threats, attacks and many cybercriminals who, in one way or another, are going to seek profit at the expense of others. They can carry out attacks against individual users or also against companies and organizations.

cyber criminal

He is sometimes known as a black hat hacker . It is the most usual. Basically, it is a person with extensive knowledge of computers, security and networks, who knows how to use certain tools to exploit vulnerabilities and who is going to put all of this into practice in a negative way against others.

They can steal passwords, sneak malware to make a system malfunction, attack a wireless network, make a company’s equipment stop working, etc. The damage is very varied and can affect many on the Internet.

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spy hackers

In this case it is a cybersecurity expert who is going to use his knowledge to spy on someone or a company . It can steal confidential data, detect failure to see a person’s movements, install some malicious software on the phone or computer and collect all kinds of information, etc.

They are usually hired by a third party. For example, a company that hires an attacker of this type to steal information from the competition or a person who wants to spy on another.

There are also hackers who are hired by a state . They will act to attack essential infrastructure of another nation they seek to harm, spy on members of the government, find vulnerabilities to take down a government company, etc. They will always act in a negative way.

We can say that in part they act to carry out cyber wars. Today the fact that an essential infrastructure of a country is compromised at the computer level can have very negative consequences for many people.

cyber terrorist

Within hackers or bad actors on the Internet we can name cyberterrorists. In this case they are going to use technology, the knowledge they have, to favor attacks . For example, find a vulnerability so that terrorists can sneak into a certain place.

They can also act to find followers on the Internet. They will even use social networks to contact other people, generally young people, whom they can take to their land and turn them into terrorists, either directly or indirectly by requesting funding for their projects.

Therefore, as you have seen, there are different types of hackers. Some are good, they will always act to achieve a safer Internet for everyone, but on other occasions we will come across terms that refer to hackers and attackers who will cause harm to both private users and companies and organizations.