We frequently hear news about businesses being exposed or facing financial situations because either system just got hacked. Cyberattacks are not new, but with the advancing technology, the types of attacks and hacking tricks are definitely shifting. Today’s hacker is not quite easy to figure out.
If we take references from the movies, there is always a guy sitting in a dark room wearing a hoodie and writing some codes on a black screen, and we are supposed to believe that he is a hacker.
Well, movies are a form of fiction, and characterization is loosely handled for entertainment purposes. But what is really happening behind the hacking, and what is the anatomy of today’s hackers?
We know you have plenty of questions, and that is why we are here to help. Let’s break down the hacker’s purpose and personality.
The hacker now resembles a mafia more than a young person in a hoodie because we live in the Age of Internet Criminals.
This risky and unlawful conduct is being driven globally by internet criminals and online gangs. Even worse, their government may occasionally support or at least defend these gangs.
What Motivates Hacking?
There is no surprise that criminals have different kinds of motivations. Some do it for money, others for blackmail, and there is some emotional connection. In short, a cyber attack can have a variety of reasons behind them and can also use different kinds of kinds of cyber-attacks. Some of the common motivations of a hacker are:
Unsurprisingly, the main driving force behind cyber-attacks is money. People who desire to commit a crime but are unsure how will always hire someone else. This is one crime that pays off since demand is higher than supply.
Services that are known to generate more than USD 100,000 annually orchestrate the creation of voluminous amounts of traffic. One application exploits sold by a vendor on the dark web can bring in thousands of dollars.
In order to stir up political upheaval in the adversary nation, hiring governments frequently divulge compromised or breached material to the general public.
Hackers also hack or employ cyberattacks like DDoS attacks to disrupt the functioning or operations of the competing county’s government websites and servers.
State-sponsored cyber attacks are another name for these types of attacks. Russia, Iran, China, North Korea, and other nations are well known for employing similar strategies.
A significant fraction of hackers are motivated by chance to compromise an impenetrable system and be recognized by their peers.
Groups of hackers are motivated by this competitive behavior to challenge one another to cause disruption at the expense of another company.
The primary motivation behind the attacks is likely the hacker’s ego. Keep in mind that reputation and expertise are crucial in the hacker world, and many people are searching for their hall of fame.
Malware authors, data leakers, etc., want to be recognized for the work they accomplish. Each hacker has a neurotic need to compare himself to others and display his skills.
They typically think they are more knowledgeable and skilled than their opponents and others who might be relied upon to help them. The larger the hack and, consequently, the greater the hacker, the more obvious the target.
What can we infer about the “typical” hacker cybercriminal from profiling?
There are always exceptions, but they typically exhibit some or all of the following traits, at least according to basic legal knowledge:
- Some degree of technical expertise is required (among hackers, and competence is the key differentiator. There are proficient hackers who are UNIX experts and can write code in their sleep. Then there are the “posers,” who can use tools to sniff networks or crack passwords.
- Obviously, disregard for the law.
- High-risk tolerance.
- Being a “control freak,” enjoying tricking or “outsmarting” others.
- An explanation for why the crime was committed, such as financial gain, intense feelings, political or religious convictions, sexual urges, or even simple boredom or the desire for “a little fun.”
Enough about the hacker; clearly, some student in a hoodie is writing code aggressively. Let’s now learn about the process of the attack too.
We are all aware that certain attacks occur due to hackers finding a weakness in a company’s software and exploiting it to access their system. However, the majority of cybercriminals adopt relatively simple techniques to access computers, such as sending phishing emails to employees to deceive them into opening an attachment or clicking on a link that launches malicious software that encrypts files and blocks access to the entire network.
So, what are the steps for it? Let’s find out.
Reconnaissance is typically the initial stage in the anatomy of a cyber attack.
Attackers frequently investigate their target organizations to learn as much as they can.
This includes network data, IP addresses, domain names, and the private information of
firm employees, such as the CFO and IT staff.
The next step for attackers is to look for network flaws that will give them access. This procedure frequently necessitates months of planning and much trial and error.
Depending on the situation and type of attack, every cyber attack will have a unique appearance.
Hackers frequently utilize a rainbow table or other methods to obtain higher-level employees’ login information after breaching a network. They are given administrator rights; as a result, giving them simple access to the whole network.
Attackers will typically attempt to steal sensitive data at this point in order to encrypt it or sell it online.
Hackers frequently use malicious software to keep hold of the network after the first penetration.
They can expand to various business systems even after being identified, or they can employ programs to keep control of the network.
Hackers frequently have the ability to continue getting access to the network without administrator rights at this point in the anatomy of a cyber attack.
Sometimes, in an effort to avoid being discovered, hackers make an effort to conceal the source of the assault. Attackers complicate investigations into how the attack began and how much data has been compromised by hiding their tracks.
Use your common sense and technology to stay safe online at home, work, school, or traveling. Some of the common ways to prevent the cyber attack are:
- Creating cyber security policies.
- Putting security awareness training into practice.
- Installing anti-malware software and spam filters.
Managing specialized software solutions and complex testing of an organization’s environment for cutting-edge cyber threats would require a team of at least two to three information security engineers, including:
- Undertaking vulnerability research
- Regularly conducting penetration testing
- Implementation of a security event and information management (SIEM).
- Software used to detect and prevent intrusions (IDS and IPS).
- Implementing a scheme to stop data loss (DLP).
All in all, you just need to be very careful about protecting your data at all costs.
The task of training every employee in your firm on cybersecurity best practices is never-ending due to the ongoing influx of people, especially in the form of new and departing staff. You can also count on us to be wiser than this because our IT procedure template team has the greatest auditors available to keep your company safe when necessary.