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Re: Re: Security matters: keep thy doors closed!

by vladb (Vicar)
on Jun 14, 2002 at 15:07 UTC ( #174554=note: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Re: Security matters: keep thy doors closed!
in thread Security matters: keep thy doors closed!

Oops, I actually realized that my use of 'hacker' in place of the proper term 'cracker' would be subject to ridicule ;-). I recall now that I too had a significant fight (friendly) with a friend of mine over his misuse of the word 'hacker'. And how could I miss it now myself! rofl. I agree that the proper word to use is 'cracker' after all. However, isn't 'cracker' = 'malicious hacker'?

Thanks a million for your reply, cjf. It is (not surprisingly) thorough and to the point. I'll take some time to go over the links you've provided here.

_____________________

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Re(3): Security matters: keep thy doors closed!
by cjf (Parson) on Jun 14, 2002 at 15:38 UTC
    However, isn't 'cracker' = 'malicious hacker'?

    The exact definition of a cracker as provided by the jargon file is "One who breaks security on a system." However it also notes that a hacker is, among other things, "A person who enjoys exploring the details of programmable systems and how to stretch their capabilities."

    It's easy to see how the two definitions can overlap. If I break the security of a system which I am authorized to perform a security audit on, which am I? This isn't a very important difference, the main distinction is more or less based on legality (although there are several exceptions).

    This may all sound very trivial, it's just a word right? Consider if in a year the major media outlets started using the term "programmer" to refer to computer criminals. Why change the meaning of a word because some reporters don't know what they're talking about?

      I think the diference between hackers and crackers is that a cracker who compromised a system would trash it or damage it (e.g. change passwords, install root kit, etc.) a hacker wouldn't do these things and merley compromises the system to test it or for the fun of it.

      ~~rob
      ____________________________________________________________
      eval pack "h*", "072796e647022245d445f475454494c5e622b3";

          I think the diference between hackers and crackers is that a cracker who compromised a system would trash it or damage it (e.g. change passwords, install root kit, etc.) a hacker wouldn't do these things and merley compromises the system to test it or for the fun of it.

        Sure... if it's their system they're playing around with. If someone breaks into one of my systems just for the fun of it, and tells me "but I didn't trash anything, so it's okay", I'd treat them with the same kind of hostility as someone who broke into my apartment for the hell of it, and told me "but I didn't steal anything, so it's okay".

        And let's not forget that these "for the fun of it" criminals can easily trash stuff by accident (been there, done that, restored my schoolwork from backups, got the perp charged and expelled, and been paranoid ever since).

        --
        The hell with paco, vote for Erudil!
        :wq

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