How do hackers become hackers?

Answered by Frank Schwing

To become a hacker, individuals often start by getting an education in cybersecurity. This can be done through various means such as attending college or university programs that offer degrees in cybersecurity or related fields. These programs provide a solid foundation in computer science, networking, programming, and security principles.

During their education, aspiring hackers may also pursue certifications that validate their skills and knowledge in specific areas of cybersecurity. Some popular certifications include Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), and Offensive Security Certified Professional (OSCP). These certifications not only enhance their technical skills but also demonstrate their commitment and expertise to potential employers.

In addition to formal education and certifications, hackers often engage in self-learning and exploration. They experiment with different tools, software, and techniques to understand how systems and networks operate and identify vulnerabilities. This hands-on experience can be gained through setting up virtual labs, participating in Capture the Flag (CTF) competitions, or joining online hacking communities.

To further refine their skills, hackers may seek employment in positions that require hacking capabilities. This could include working as a security consultant, penetration tester, or vulnerability analyst. These roles involve actively testing and assessing the security of systems, networks, and applications to identify weaknesses and recommend improvements. By working in such roles, hackers gain practical experience and exposure to real-world scenarios, enabling them to develop a deeper understanding of hacking techniques.

It is worth noting that becoming a hacker does not necessarily imply engaging in illegal activities. Ethical hackers, also known as white-hat hackers, use their skills to identify and fix vulnerabilities with the permission of the target organization. They play a crucial role in ensuring the security of computer systems and networks.

Hackers learn to hack by obtaining an education in cybersecurity, pursuing certifications, gaining hands-on experience through self-learning and employment in relevant roles, and adhering to ethical principles. It is a continuous journey of learning and staying updated with the ever-evolving field of cybersecurity.