Hack Attack Essay

1653 words - 7 pages

Internet crimes are developing at a shocking rate. Since the invention of the World Wide Web, it gives criminals the power to collect and steal information without anyone finding out (Galbreth and Shor 595). Cybercrimes increased by an astonishing 22.3 percent from 2008 to 2009 alone (Hoi-Ying 1646). Of those crimes, only about 43.5 percent of companies report the crime to authorities (Hoi-Ying 1646). With each occurrence of hacking, companies and individuals lose millions of dollars to security flaws (Hoi-Ying 1646). Without the strong pressure to solve the problem, cybercriminals will inevitably cause problems for everyone. Each individual or company will all lose abundance of information ...view middle of the document...

Hacking has an extensive history since the beginning of the 1870s. In 1878, a company hired a group of teenage boys to operate switchboards for the new telephone (Devitt 22). They fired them because they tried to hack the system to figure out how the system worked (Devitt 22). Hackers use a variety of ways to accomplish their motives. Some hackers defaced different company websites by putting up malicious and cruel messages on company webpages. In 1999, a group named MagicFX ruined eBay’s website wreaking havoc by changing auction prices, and redirecting customers to other websites (Devitt 24). Another instance was in 1998, when two hackers changed the New York Times website to read “Hackers for Girls” because of the arrest of Kevin Mitnick, a famous computer hacker (Devitt 24). A different way hackers do damage is by compromising systems or writing viruses. An example was in 2000, a Filipino programmer released a virus named, “I Love You.” Within a limited number of hours, it infected computer systems worldwide (Devitt 35). Computer Economics estimated it costed around $17 billion in loss of files and work down time globally (Devitt 35). In 1990, four hackers almost caused havoc to the United States’ 911 service (Devitt 23). The group called, “Legion of Doom” stole 911 specifications and could have potentially disrupted the service (Devitt 23). Within the last few years, attacks have become much more sophisticated and frequent. One attack that occurred recently was the attack on Target last year. The hacking took place through their point-of-sale system, stealing nearly 40 million customers’ credit and debit card information and pins (Fairchild). If this trend continues, no one will be safe sending any information online with the security risks. Back then, viruses traveled gradually because they had to go through floppy disks, and each individual disk needs to have someone insert it into each computer system (Lin and Cheng 20). By the time it spreaded through a few computers, someone would already find out something is wrong. Companies had the time to respond and quickly recover. Nowadays, it spreads swiftly through emails and backdoors (Lin and Cheng 20). There is almost no telling if an intruder will invade (Lin and Cheng 20). Companies and enterprises have much shorter time to react to an intrusion because it happens almost instantly. Within a network, an attack could compromise most of the computers on that network. The term hacker did not always have a negative connotation. Originally, it was a term associated with programmers who want to learn the inner workings of a computer through discovery and challenges.(Zhang 25).” They were programmers who wanted to learn how the system worked, or tweak a program to do things it could not do before. The modern definition of hacker today is, “one who uses programming skills to gain illegal access to a computer network or file (Zhang 25).” Most people know this definition because of the awareness of...

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