lynx_lupus

stereotype on hackers

26 posts in this topic

i was recently away on a family trip to singapore and wish to quote some of the security item that i saw ...

norton internet security:

"this product is designed to stop malacious hacker from stealing or damaging you personal files"

there is obvioulsy much more of a harsh stereotype on hackers than i thought there was. who brought this about, who said that we were the criminals and when.

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They're playing off the FUD (fear, uncertainty, doubt) that the media has been spreading. The marketing tactic for their entire suite of products relies solely on scaring people into buying them. To create a need. Now if they said "to cater against the virgin 12 year old hacker-wannabe next door", they wouldn't sell nearly as many products as if they stated "to cater against the expert THAT CAN RUIN YOUR SYSTEM BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA *cough*"

But hackers overall are misrepresented, because the media concept of what a hacker is does not match our own definition of what hackers truly are. Hackers are very talented computer enthusiasts, not terrorists.

Who said we were criminals? The news. The media. Because it sells. They'll distort any truth as long as it sells. And then other news agencies begin to believe their own hype, their own distortions. And then, what was once a term to describe a group of MIT hippies has come to describe a group behind major succesful DDoS attacks, behind malevolent wardrivers, etc.

The media is your figurative enemy. It is everyone's enemy. The media will sacrifice one person's life and credibility for the sake of entertaining everyone else, and its only once you've realised that you've been duped by the media that one comes to understand this. The rest live in blissful ignorance.

Edited by Seal
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its because all you ever hear about is what "hackers" have screwed up or the worms and viruses and you never hear about all the good things and anyone can say that their a hacker and anyone will believe them....

also people fail to see that most if not all of todays technology was first created by a hacker

and what pisses me off the most is going to school and listening to the kids behind me talk about how l33t they are because they downloaded some crap off the internet and put it on their sisters computer

Edited by TelcoBob
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how true. i have to put up with that a lot!

people ph34r the hackers, sure the media is realated but thats not it alone. humans fear what they cannot understand. most people are afraid of death, thats simply because no one really know what happens 'to the person' after death. hackers are feared because we are not understood. the majority of your average citizen is not comfortable with the fact that we can do so much if we felt like it. they do not understand how or why we do it. they fear that "lack of privacy" that they illude upon themselves. *enter the media and large corporation i.e. norton*.

the media and companys like norton use this, like seal very rightly said, to improve marketing or whatever. it's a really vicious cycle with the media on top =[

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A lot of the misinterpretation of the term has to do with the symbiotic relationship between the media and the destructive, script kiddy types. The kiddies are looking for some recognition outside of the community (because they can't get anywhere in the community), and the "journalists" are looking for a story.

It is human nature to form an opinion about something, even if you really know nothing about it. I know a handful of people who voted, and felt strongly for one of the candidates, but really knew nothing about the issues. A lot of people aren't interested in hacking, and that's fine, but they tend to formulate unsubstaniated opinions without even thinking about it, and that's not fair. Hackers are bad... that's just the way it is. There is no questiona about it.

A lot of people in the community want to fork the word hacker into "cracker" for the evil media-defined criminals-who-happen-to-use-a-computer, and hackers, the patron saints of the digital fronteir. This is a misguided effort however, because even if the idea took off, a word like "cracker" with such a broad meaning would have the same negative effect of lumping an enourmous group of, no, type of people.

There is also a lot of debate within the community, and probably this board on what is and is not morally right and wrong. What is hacking and what is not. Some people will argue that if you break the law and break into computers illegally are not a hacker, while others will say the opposite. Thus the community tried to distinguish a series of "hats", which, like the hacker\cracker semantics, is misguided and fruitless.

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Well when you break the law. When you break in to a system that isn't yours to brake into then you are a criminal. People or companies don't want the networks they run to be messed with. I don't think you would enjoy people playing with yours. just because it was easy to get access doesn't say it is ok. I use networks that I know the owner isn't shareing with me. I can tell by what they share on the windows file share network they run, but I hope nobody is doing the same to me. That is kinda fucked up. I may not do anything bad to any hardware on that network but they still didn't put it there for me. Just because you can take advantage of weaker people doesn't make it ok.

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Hacking in and of itself isn't a crime, if you go by the purest definition. However, digital trespassing, destruction of files, etc. are all illegal. However, companies try to expand simple exploration of a system into something akin to corporate espionage rather than admit to themselves that they fucked up in their security.

Then there's the (in)famous "house metaphor"..."It's as if you have a locked house, and seeing it's locked, you check all the windows to make sure they're locked too. And when you find one that isn't, you go inside to look around."

BULLSHIT.

If you HAVE to use an analogy, imagine a house with no walls, no windows, just a locked door. And the lock to the door is made out of butter. THAT'S what most corporate systems look like. And hackers are prosecuted often just for saying "Hey, your lock's made of butter. You might want to go get one that's made of metal or something." They're treated as if THEY caused the security flaws the company is too stupid to fix themselves.

The Abstruse One

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Oh! Wow! People don't like hackers! I'm fucking SHOCKED! I had no fucking idea! I thought everybody LOVED us!!!

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...and what pisses me off the most is going to school and listening to the kids behind me talk about how l33t they are because they downloaded some crap off the internet and put it on their sisters computer

heh that happens at my uni as well but i just laugh about it in my head and if someone asks me why my system looks cool, i tell them im running linux and they think im some 31337 hax0r or something, it all just makes me laugh.

you should laugh about it too, its funny when you think about it :D

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You know if we are so hated and thats not gonna change. Why dont we give them something to actually hate us for???

g 2.0

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Whatever works. But no, not end the internet. Cuz then BinRev would be gone. WHAT WOULD WE DO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

g 2.0

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I wholeheartedly disagree with all the statements about launching some sort of attack on the internet! And no, that doesn't have anything to do with the fact that several major corporations and law enforcement agencies regularly read this site!

Seriously though, isn't that pretty much just feeding into their negative stereotypes? Hell, I could write a news story just out of this thread. "Hackers to end the internet - boasting about bringing down several government agencies - what will happen if the terrorists hire the hackers?" blah blah blah.

Guys, seriously, don't give them any fodder...

The Abstruse One

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it wouldnt matter any ways they make there own foder. oh well i like the net to much to help you so and i dont think any of use would realy go though with such a plan. I belive the satement was a joke about how the media views us

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i hate to say it, but i think that in a lot of ways we help to perpetuate the steriotypes that we so dispise.

hacking is an act of doing. it is what we do that gives us a bad name, not because there is anything wrong with it necessarily, but because of the way it looks to people.

every day more and more of our lives are controlled by computers, and people in general have accepted the computer as a very powerfull tool, and a trusted one at that. people have a hard time believing that something that they rely upon for so much is as flawed as it is, and really dont want to hear about it. its almost as if when a hacker finds a flaw regardless of what they do with it they are ostracized for looking for flaws in the first place. i think that this goes back to the marketing of software. Microsoft has no interest in admitting that their server solutions are horibly insecure, to the contrary they market them as secure.

the media plays into this by labeling anyone who perpetrates a computer crime as a 'hacker', and when we protest saying that it was not a hacker, and just some damn script kiddie, we look all the more dangerous.

because we had the word stolen from us we try to ameliorate the problem by calling in to play more symantics, ie: white/black hat, hacker/cracker, but this does nothing to help us as we seem to be the only ones who know about or even care what the difference is.

as for lashing back, though it sounds like fun it would only make things worse for us. the bottom line is that the word hacker is sexy. it is dangerous, and mysterious. as such it sells. and in this day and age thats what really matters.

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The word hacker is sexy? Does that mean women will be attracted to me when i tell 'em i'm a hacker? NO, they'll be afraid of me. <_< Their isn't much we can do about it. People these days are ignorant bastards. Just let them have their fun. If something comes along and they need our help, then everything will be alright. 'Cause they will see the good side of hackers and what they risk to protect computers and make sure some idiot does not ruine other people's computer.

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people are not always scared of what they dont understand ....I know I don't know what happens after death but i'm not scared of it....sure I try to avoid it when I can but thats me just not being suicide.

ph34r the fact that I don't ph34r death :ninja:

Edited by specter
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i said the word "hacker" is sexy, not the hacker themselves.

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As stated previously the word hacker has been changed due in part to the media and the people that claimed to be hackers once they were caught doing criminal acts. Ignorance does play a huge role in how this misrepresentation is perpetuated, however indifference is just as much to blame. We (hackers) for the most part are not doing our part for several different reasons. When we meet someone with a skewed idea of what a hacker is how many times do we take the time to explain the misconception to them? Sure we don't always have time to do this, but many times we do. How many websites to have started to explain the difference between the common criminal and what a hacker really is. I am guilty of this one myself. Instead we put up all these sites for our own kind and regular people who stumble across them see most of the info and their ignorance keeps them from recognizing the use of it and they assume it is some type of site to promote criminal acts. I personally try to take the time to explain to anyone that uses the name hacker incorrectly exactly where they are mistaken and how it got that way. I proudly declare myself as hacker in public no matter who is there and no matter who might find out. Some people don't do this enough, fear of authority, fear of opinions, etc. We all have limitations and reasons we don't do everything possible to take the name back, but that is the way humanity is. This isn't a flame or an attempt to place blame on anyone here, only something to help point out that we (hackers) need to take an active role in taking our name back. For all the virus, worm, trojans out there we need to be ready to step up and help people, educate people, help people defend their systems all while letting them know that we are the true hackers, not these misalignedcomputer criminals who happen to get pissed at the world and use their knowledge contrary to our ethics. These are all just my opinions of course and can be discarded by you as quickly as the next guys...

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that would be a great idea for a project, something along the lines of project purification: cleansing the word hacker

we could have Q&A's, and coding projects

*idea begins to form about making a site*

EDIT: although to be quite fair, the reason I started joining communities like this is to learn how to gain acces to servers' roots, but I sorta outgrew that

Edited by picklejuice
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