A widely used term in cybersecurity is hacker . Sometimes with negative connotations, it really is a word that is not always related to a cybercriminal. In this article we are going to talk about which are the most famous in history. A review of some hackers worldwide. We will also explain what exactly this term means and why there are different types.
What is a hacker
We can say that the term refers to a person with extensive knowledge of computer security . He is an expert who can test a system, a network, or any connected device, as well as applications. There are different types, they act in different ways depending on their goals, and they may or may not also put the security and privacy of others at risk.
Is a hacker bad? Not only can there be good hackers, but they are even necessary. They are since part of their job is to detect vulnerabilities that can be exploited by hackers. For example, a failure in a Wi-Fi network, in a computer program, etc.
However, there are different types of hackers . There are hats white, gray, red, green… Each one of them has its particularities. Generally, when we talk about hackers, we refer to white hat hackers, who are the ones who act in a positive way to detect flaws and try to improve computer security.
Black hat hacker would be hackers, although this term is already simply known as cyber criminal. At an intermediate point would be a gray hat hacker, who, although he breaks the law, does not have the ultimate goal of causing damage, such as the theft of passwords or data.
which are the most famous
Over the years there have been both good hackers and hackers. Some of them have become famous for different reasons. Generally for having carried out very complex and continuous attacks, having hacked an important program or service, etc. Let’s see a list with some of the most famous .
For many Kevin Mitnick, an American, is the most famous and important hacker in history, so he could not be missing from our list. It is also known as Cóndor and it started in the 80’s. Like many others, it started very young to be interested in computer science. Several books have been written about him and films have been made.
During his career he has managed to break the security of different important companies , such as Pacific Bell, and even NORAD, the North American Aerospace Defense Command. Although he has been tried and imprisoned several times, he has always denied using the access data that he was capable of exploiting.
We can say that this is an example of a gray hat hacker . Although he never really exploited the information he stole or did damage to the systems he exploited, to carry out these practices he broke the law. So even though today he’s a white hat hacker working for companies, at some point he crossed the line.
Namesake of the former, Kevin Poulsen is another American. He is also known as Dark Dante . He became famous mainly for a curious attack on a radio station in California, in order to win a contest. What he did was control the calls, the telephones, and thus make sure that when he called he entered the corresponding number to receive the prize, which was a Porsche.
But that was in 1990. Before then, in the early 1980s, Kevin had already exploited the ARPANET , the Pentagon’s computer network. Although he was not convicted of it, he did receive a warning. He was still 17 years old. It didn’t take long for him to gain access to other government computer equipment.
He is currently a journalist, an expert in cybersecurity, and has also collaborated with the justice system to detect cybercriminals. He spent time in jail where he served time for his cybercrimes.
Another famous hacker was Jonathan James. He is also known by the Nick of c0mrade . From a very young age he began attacking government and business networks. Being a minor, he already went to prison. In fact, he is considered the first American teenager to go to prison for cybersecurity issues. He became famous especially for having hacked into the NASA network and seized source code of enormous value.
This even caused NASA to have to close its network for several weeks to analyze what had happened. Logically, this meant significant economic losses. It is another example of a gray hat hacker, since he always denied that he used those stolen files for evil.
Albert González is also well known. He is also known by the pseudonym Soupnazi . In this case, we are dealing with a hacker who was arrested for massive bank card fraud after having stolen data from millions of accounts. However, he did not go to jail for this reason since he became a collaborator of justice to detect many cybercriminals.
However, from then on he continued to carry out attacks and collaborated in the theft of bank cards. He and his group stole a large amount of data from companies through backdoors and SQL injection. He has come to appear in television series, due to the repercussion that his case and that of his group had.
Also known as Mafiaboy , Michael Calce is another hacker who started his career as a teenager. He is of Canadian origin. It began to break the security of the university’s computer equipment, but it also put giants such as Yahoo, Dell, eBay, FIFA, CNN or Amazon in trouble. In these last cases, it used DDoS attacks . It is estimated that it caused losses worth about 1,700 million dollars.
The fact that it could put pages of this caliber on the ropes made many rethink what could happen to less well-known and less protected websites. Undoubtedly, a DDoS attack can lead to very significant economic losses for any organization, since it becomes unavailable for a time.
Another very famous hacker is John Drapper, also known as Captain Crunch . It did not act like the previous ones, since in this case it focused on telephony. In the early 1970s he was able to make long distance calls for free by finding a bug that enabled him to enter operator mode. To do this, he used a small toy that he was able to modify so that it would emit a tone on the same frequency that an operator used.
Although he was arrested for phone company fraud, he always said he did it to learn how the technology worked. He came to teach people like Steve Jobs how his method worked and later came to work for Apple.
In short, these are some of the most famous hackers in history and what made them famous. There have been many more, as we all know. However, it is especially striking to see how the first hackers acted, like some of those we have seen in the 70s and 80s, and how everything has changed over time.