What is ethical hacking?
Hackers have solid information and knowledge that, over time, has proven to be increasingly critical to protecting organizations’ data.
An ethical hacker’s main function, as the name implies, is to hack the system, but legally.
Their job is to investigate possible security weaknesses to prevent malicious hackers from breaking into the system. When it encounters such scenarios, it must immediately propose a solution so that there is no room for invasions that cause financial losses.
How does it relate to cybersecurity?
Just as in cybersecurity, the goal is the same: to make the programs as well prepared as possible for a possible attack by eliminating all their potential weaknesses.
The ethical hacker works in the cybersecurity area of Offensive Security. This area is dedicated exclusively to detecting weaknesses, acting directly, and creating ways to safeguard the organization from cybercrime.
To be able to perform your role successfully and accurately you need to have had previous training in which you experienced systems and program intrusion.
Why is ethical hacking important?
As we explored in the cybersecurity article, the financial and data losses can prove complicated for an organization to manage. Other types of attacks may aim to compromise services it provides or call into question its credibility. Companies that often see their activities disrupted and harmed by third parties are telecommunications, banking, politics, and healthcare.
But where do ethics come in?
Professionals working in this field must follow a series of rules and procedures and under no circumstances break the professional secrecy to which they have previously committed themselves.
The EC-Council, originally from the United States of America, provides the Certified Ethical Hacker exam which is globally known and sought after as one of the best.
Its ethical nature assumes that it is legal. As such, it is a purposeful and desired intrusion.
What does it take to be an ethical hacking professional?
The main characteristics that make a good professional in this area of cybersecurity are:
patience: the professional must be patient
persistence: being persistent makes it easier to detect errors or find better solutions
obstinacy and resilience: if one path is not feasible, try others without ever giving up
concentration and focus: for this function, you need to be very attentive, otherwise you may put at risk the content you are trying to protect
integrity: fulfill your duty of confidentiality
solid knowledge: ability in web programming, database, computer networks, and others that prove to be complementary and enhancing in the performance of your duties
It is an area that requires constant study due to its inherent dynamism and demands a lot of self-education.
What are its benefits?
The goal of this security area is to make the systems of all companies more secure at the computer level, preventing cybercrime.
As more and more cyber attacks appear all over the world, it is understood that there is a need to reinforce and protect data.
By predicting attacks and making weaknesses disappear, making the system more solid and cohesive, the “good hacker” puts himself in the shoes of the “evil hacker” by evaluating his motivations and delving into what steps he might take.
An ethical hacker should get to know the company in which he works very well, encouraging awareness of cybersecurity and promoting the improvement of internal processes.
An ethical hacker should not shut down computer equipment but rather strengthen protocols aimed at protection, avoiding spies and invaders, and safeguarding his client.
How to be an ethical hacker?
As stated above, anyone who wants to pursue the career of an ethical hacker must present a vague inherent knowledge of computers and their technology, these being:
- Networking fundamentals;
- Operating systems;
- Knowledge of scripting language;
- Nmap: used to measure the security level of computers or to find services on a computer network;
- Wireshark: examine network traffic by cataloging it through protocols;
- BadMod: gauging the security of web applications.
Other possible backgrounds that will be valued are:
- Cisco network and infrastructure certifications;
- Microsoft MCP professional certificates;
- Red Team Certified Professional;
- Licensed Penetration Tester (LPT);
- Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH).