What is hacking?

What’s interesting is that the term “hacking” had a completely different meaning not so long ago. Hackers were known as highly skilled professionals, while hacking referred to a brainstorming activity aimed at solving difficult problems. Unfortunately, the term has since lost its positive meaning.

Today, hacking refers to malicious acts aimed at stealing information, gaining control over a remote network or computer, or causing a system to crash. In the first two instances, hackers usually use malicious software, crimeware, phishing attacks and spam.

Hacking attacks aimed at damaging or disabling networks and computers are particularly dangerous. Ordinary internet users are rarely targeted, as these attacks require a great deal of financial resources and organizational effort, which are beyond the reach of petty cyber criminals. Websites and corporate networks are the main targets of these attacks, which are often organized by business competitors. Hackers often use computer viruses planted in the target’s network to damage and disable it.

Cyber attacks which make websites inaccessible are also very popular among hackers. The most widely used of these are DDoS-attacks, during which a website is bombarded with queries simultaneously sent from a large number of computers.

This causes the website to fail and often results in equipment damage. Media websites are especially sensitive to DDoS-attacks, as they affect the sites’ ability to promptly disseminate information. Equally vulnerable are e-businesses, including online stores and payment services, for which every minute of downtime results in financial losses.

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