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Cyber Crime Essay

1154 words - 5 pages

Jason PadgettCCJS 390 6380 Cyber Crime and SecurityMcKinnon09/06/2014The word hacker is thrown around as the go-to word, which infinitely describes a computer professional, or even sometimes an enthusiast as an internet criminal. To society, hackers are generally projected to be techno nerds that sit in their basements, computing away and finding ways to penetrate the cyber defenses of large companies. What people do not know is that the world of Information Technology uses different terms to describe types of hackers.Much like a movie, or a television show, there are good people and bad people in the world of hacking. Black hats; hackers that mean to harm, steal files, software - even cause damage. White hats; educated professionals that are mostly employed by companies to prevent cyber-attacks, and set up defense systems. They do battle in an invisible world that most people are unaware of; anticipating each other's moves and finding loopholes in systems.Some time ago, a Scotland born man named Gary McKinnon successfully penetrated what the United States government describes as the National Aeronautics and Space Administration; he essentially hacked NASA. Not everyone is capable of performing such a task, yet this longtime computer geek, as he describes himself, was able to bypass government technology and defenses to access confidential files. Sensitive information that a stalwart government defense system obviously protected for a vast number of reasons (Hacker McKinnon turns search expert. (n.d.). Retrieved September 7, 2014). Mr. McKinnon, a supposed 20 year professional in the Information Technology business accessed NASA's systems over a span of about thirteen months, all the while sitting at his girlfriend's aunt's house in London. In what seems like an unlikely story by just reading numerous articles on the internet, multiple sources state McKinnon had been a long-term hacker and computer enthusiast; obviously not just an Information Technology professional. (Hacker McKinnon turns search expert. (n.d.). Retrieved September 7, 2014)As anyone can imagine, hacking NASA can come with serious consequences, and when someone at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration discovered the intrusion, McKinnon's connection was promptly terminated. Certainly, a world power government would keep the highest tier of technology available to prevent what I would consider reckless hacking - that is obvious. Yet McKinnon himself describes his attempts at hacking as downloading software from the internet, all the while using Microsoft Windows.Anyone that knows anything about computers - especially hacking - knows this seems just a little farfetched, yet sustainably possible given the right circumstances and situation. Personally, I find the fact that anyone using a Windows system could even penetrate a government computer, simply because what has been described is he essentially used other software, and did not create his own. Using other tools for...

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