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cybersecurity

Jun 14, 2024

The Difference Between Hacker and Cracker in Cybersecurity

Hackers and crackers are two main actors in the world of cybercrime. What are the differences between them? Do they both cause harm? Read the following article.

The world of cyber security has two main actors that receive special attention: hackers and crackers. The difference between hackers and crackers often confuses many people, as the two terms are frequently used interchangeably in the context of cyber security. However, there are fundamental differences between them.

What are the differences between hackers and crackers in the world of cyber security? How do they work? Let’s explore this article for explanations!

What is a Hacker

A hacker is an individual with programming skills who can find vulnerabilities in computer systems. Hackers usually have various goals, such as breaching security systems, gaining unauthorized access, or stealing sensitive information.

What is a Cracker

Similar to hackers, crackers are also involved in hacking activities. However, crackers hack with criminal intent. Crackers work illegally and specifically hack systems remotely to steal data and cause permanent damage.

Differences Between Hackers and Crackers

The differences between hackers and crackers depend on their methods, goals, the damage they cause, and other factors. Although both engage in hacking activities, they have significant differences.

1. Purpose
Hackers use their hacking skills for various purposes, not all of which are criminal. Sometimes, hackers are hired to find and fix weaknesses in security systems. Hackers can work legally and ethically.
Crackers use their skills to break or bypass security systems with criminal intent. The difference between hackers and crackers is that crackers hack computer systems, networks, or software to cause damage, steal information, or gain illegal profits.

2. Types
Hackers: Hackers have various types depending on their purpose, such as White Hat Hackers who work ethically to find and fix security weaknesses or Red Hat Hackers, who are deliberately recruited by the government to find bugs in government website systems.

Crackers: In hacker terminology, crackers are the same as Black Hat Hackers, who hack computer systems with malicious or criminal intent, usually for illegal purposes. Black hat hackers exploit system weaknesses to cause damage such as stealing personal data and damaging network systems.

3. Motivation
Hackers: Hackers can operate ethically and legally, aiming to help strengthen system security.

Crackers: In contrast, crackers always have malicious intent and engage in illegal activities.

4. Skills and Knowledge
Hackers: The difference between hackers and crackers lies in the skills and knowledge they possess. A hacker has deep knowledge of programming languages and operating systems (OS), allowing them to hack in various ways.

Crackers: Crackers do not require many skills. Crackers only need to know some illegal tricks that help them steal data.

5. Tools Used
Hackers: Hackers have high-level hacking skills, so they can use their legal tools to check network strength, build their own security systems, and protect systems from cyber threats.

Crackers: Crackers do not have their own tools due to their limited skills. They use other people's tools to carry out illegal activities and compromise systems.

6. Data Security
Hackers: Legal and ethical hackers generally protect data and never steal or damage it. Their sole purpose is to gain knowledge from the relevant data and information.

Crackers: On the other hand, crackers typically steal, delete, or damage data they find from system vulnerabilities.

7. Damage Caused
Hackers: Hackers operate ethically and legally with the aim of helping to strengthen system security, so the damage caused by hackers is not always harmful.

Crackers: In contrast, crackers always have malicious intent and engage in illegal activities. Thus, cracking always causes harm, from system damage, data loss, to financial losses.
Methods Used by Hackers and Crackers

Although there are many differences between hackers and crackers, they both use various methods to hack systems and steal data. Here are the methods they use:

1. Password Hacking

Hackers and crackers often hack passwords using various methods such as guessing password combinations or using algorithms that generate combinations of numbers, letters, and symbols.

2. Malware Infection

This method used by hackers and crackers involves spreading viruses or malware through various internet-connected vulnerabilities such as email, downloaded files, or Wi-Fi connections. Users usually receive messages asking them to click or download certain files, which then infect and damage computer systems.

3. Social Engineering

Social engineering is a manipulative technique used by hackers and crackers to exploit human error and obtain personal or financial information.

4. Exploiting Unsecured Wi-Fi

Hackers and crackers can infiltrate user devices by exploiting open, unsecured Wi-Fi networks. This method is known as wardriving. Once connected, hackers only need to bypass basic security to access devices connected to that network.

5. Injection Attack

An Injection Attack is an attack involving the injection of malicious code or commands into a biometric system to manipulate the system. For example, fraudsters inject fake biometric data into the face recognition system in verification systems. This attack aims to gain illegal access to security systems.

Understanding the differences between hackers and crackers is crucial in the context of cyber security. Sometimes the public assumes that hackers are the ones conducting harmful hacks. In reality, there are also crackers who need to be watched out for and countered.

Specifically, to prevent hackers and crackers from invading the verification system of an application, secure verification should be used. VIDA verification has been strengthened with the ability to control the entire process within the biometric system, allowing hacking attempts to be prevented early.

VIDA - Verified Identity for All. VIDA provides a trusted digital identity platform.

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